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Out in the World: 60 LGBTQ Afghan refugees arrive in Canada

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www.ebar.com

The Canadian government has quietly relocated 60 LGBTQ Afghan refugees from Pakistan to the North American country.Afghan refugees flew out of Islamabad to Nova Scotia around April 30, according to gay Afghan American activist Nemat Sadat in a May 1 email announcing the resettlement effort.

Most of the Afghan refugees were from a list of more than 1,000 queer Afghans he has been advocating for over the past nine months.

Only one refugee, a transgender Afghan who spoke with the Bay Area Reporter, was represented by Rainbow Railroad, a Canadian LGBTQ asylum and refugee organization."The end of Ramadan and start of Eid proved to be a perfect cover in clearing out a large number of LGBT+ Afghans in Pakistan who were on my list and waiting for their resettlement to Canada," Sadat wrote in the email to the B.A.R. "I'm grateful that Canada is doing everything it can to help my people get a chance to restart their lives in a free and open society."A 26-year-old Afghan transgender man on that flight who, for reasons of safety, identified himself with the pseudonym Ganish, spoke to the B.A.R.Ganish said he left Afghanistan after being threatened and severely beaten by his own family members.

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