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This practice guide was written by Lore Roels and Liselot Casteleyn, both researchers at Ghent University. The guide focuses on the importance and implications of a ‘gender sensitive’ procedure for international protection applications. This approach explains the myth-based ways of thinking that permeate Belgian procedures concerning fleeing persons: sexual and gender-based violence (SGG, by Lore Roels) and persecution for sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI, by Liselot Casteleyn). 


This guide is complemented by the NANSEN Tool: a thematic bibliography. It provides the relevant legal, academic, and policy tools to inform gender-related application procedures for international protection. 


The myths identified by this guide influence: credibility assessments (I.e., vagueness, inconsistencies, lack of ‘lived-in’ experience, and delayed explanations in the request procedures); the material and personal well-being of applicants; internal alternatives for flight; private persecution; state protection (I.e. by local authorities and legal/policy mechanisms); non-state protection (I.e. through private support networks and NGOs); knowledge of other countries; the victimisation of males; LGBTIQ+-related knowledge; the chance that ‘sexual identity’ will be disclosed; LGBTIX+-relationships with associated risks. 


Lawyers of asylum law are encouraged to draw from these two sources to ensure their reasoning in applications for international protection under SGG and SOGI is rooted in evidence-based and interdisciplinary expertise. Thus, the quality of legal support for applicants in such proceedings will be improved. 


Read here 


Other useful NANSEN sources 

Including those concerning other forms of gender-related violence