Iceland intends to accept about a dozen asylum seekers from Iran and Afghanistan.
The decisions was announced by the Ministry of Welfare yesterday. Specifically, Iceland intends to accept women from Afghanistan, and gay people from “Iran or Afghanistan”. In total, 10 to 14 asylum seekers will be brought into the country, in two separate groups.
Iceland, in cooperation with the United Nations, regularly accepts some groups of asylum seekers. In this instance, Icelandic authorities felt the circumstances were right to be able to bring in single mothers, and that the country is diligent enough in protecting the rights of LGBT people to be able to provide asylum to them.
While this has been a practice since 1996, it is worth noting that these are asylum seekers selected from refugee camps. Asylum seekers who come to Iceland of their own volition are, much more often than not, turned away, sometimes waiting months or even years for an answer from authorities.
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