Save Fernanda Milan: demo @ Danish embassy tomorrow


3:55 pm - September 9th 2012

by Guest    


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contribution by Natacha Kennedy

Tomorrow, Monday 10 Sept, a very rare thing is happening: A demonstration at 5.30 outside the Danish Embassy in London.

Fernanda Milan is a young woman of 22, she is intelligent, bubbly and stylish. Yet in a week’s time the Danish government will be sending her to her death. Her crime; being transgender. Fernanda is Guatemalan and used to work as spokeswoman for a group called OASIS, which campaigns for human rights of trans people in Guatemala.

As a trans person who has actively campaigned for rights which ordinary people in Europe take for granted, Fernanda became a target for these vigilante groups and elements of the police, which is why she fled to Denmark.

Some people have suggested that, if she does get deported she will probably not even get out of Guatemala airport alive, and even if she does it will only be a matter of time before she is hunted down and killed.

Figures are difficult to come by but by pulling together information from different sources it appears that probably around 60 trans people have been murdered in Guatemala in the last decade, and dozens more have simply “disappeared”. For a country of only 13 million people this makes it one of the places where trans people are most likely to be killed.

It has been estimated that the average life expectancy of a transgender person in Guatemala is 25, and there are, quite simply, no trans people there at all over 35. Trans people are excluded from society and have no access to education or employment, most being forced into sex work to survive, where they become easy targets for extra-judicial killings.

The problem for Fernanda is that Denmark, the UK and Ireland opted out of an EU agreement to include persecution on the grounds of gender identity as a criterion for asylum.

Yet Denmark has an additional obligation to Fernanda: While she was in a Red Cross asylum camp in Sandholm in Jutland, she as placed in a male dormitory. As a result of this she was gang-raped and fled the camp ending up being forced to work in a brothel. When, eventually, she was interviewed by the police (about her asylum application, she has never been interviewed about the rapes) the police officer effectively told her it was her fault that she got raped.

The Danish government has the chance to save the life of a young woman who, if they fail to act, will shortly no longer be with us.

Save Fernanda Milan Demonstration outside the Royal Danish Embassy,
55 Sloane Street,
London SW1X 9SR.
Monday 10 September 5.30 – 8.00pm.
The Facebook demo page

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Reader comments


“The problem for Fernanda is that Denmark, the UK and Ireland opted out of an EU agreement to include persecution on the grounds of gender identity as a criterion for asylum.”

Why did she seek asylum in Denmark then?

I suspect there is more to this than meets the eye…

This is a very sad world we live in… only one comment on here so far and it is already suggesting there is more to this story than meets the eye. This one comment sums up exactly what the problems are in this world, where the fact a woman could lose her life just for being transgendered is questioned by somebody who just doesn’t have a clue what life is like for many transgender people worldwide! Good luck with the demonstration. Make them listen and more importantly make them act for the good of this woman and many like her!

Don’t worry too much about it Nicola – Tone is a regular right-wing troll.

Besides, over a 100 people have tweeted the story, so they clearly are trying to spread the word.

@2 Plus if people are like me they only come here while at work. This is shocking I’m surprised at Denmark.

@3 – A troll is someone who tries to wind people up and will do this by saying things they don’t even believe. Is it possible that this TONE character is just right wing and so has a different view to you? If not doesn’t that make everyone a troll?

Dave @ 4:

Yes, I’m broadly right-wing. No, I’m not at all prejudiced against trans-sexuals – particularly when they could be murdered if returned to their home country: that’s what refugee status is for.

However, I am by nature sceptical, and here I see a trans-sexual seeking asylum in a country that does not provide asylum on those grounds. Shurely shome mishtake?? I mean, 10 minutes on the web before buying your plane ticket would tell you the safest destinations…

Moreover, the OP invites support when most of us cannot read Danish and so understand Danish media comment on the case…

Finally, Dave, you are right: Sunny defines anyone who comments against the grain as a troll. Like several others on here, he wants to live in a political echo chamber. I am the opposite: I find constructive discussion with political opponents enlightens me and sharpens my arguments. And, on LC, I find some of the OPs and many of the comments of excellent quality.

Although the uk has opt’d out of a blanket acceptance, the uk has an obligation under “humanitarian protection” which differs from asylum, in that it does not pertain to “state” but rather safely.

Although I am no expert at danish law, I would assume that as another “eu law” following state, they will oblige eu conventions, to the extent that they will consider such, if a case is put to them around these article rights.

Many immigration stories are not as they seem, and well meaning people do tend to get confused.

For example, we read regular stories using the term “deportation” when they actually refer to “administrative removal” which in fact are quite different.

(Although the effect of both is the removal of a person).

I cannot give an idea on where this case stands, but inherently warn against kneejerk answers or statements.


Reactions: Twitter, blogs
  1. Jayne Evans

    The Danish government is about to send a woman to her death. Her crime? Being transgender: http://t.co/agtUsp20 (via @libcon)

  2. Nissemus

    Oh my god MT @PatrickStrud: The Danish government is about to send a woman to her death. Her crime? Being transgender: http://t.co/6RsOIZvu

  3. Mette

    Oh my god MT @PatrickStrud: The Danish government is about to send a woman to her death. Her crime? Being transgender: http://t.co/6RsOIZvu

  4. Tyrone Power

    The Danish government is about to send a woman to her death. Her crime? Being transgender: http://t.co/agtUsp20 (via @libcon)

  5. Marion Cromb

    Oh my god MT @PatrickStrud: The Danish government is about to send a woman to her death. Her crime? Being transgender: http://t.co/6RsOIZvu

  6. Kai Michael Cohen

    Please share widely – #London protest to save Fernanda Milan: http://t.co/Ok4XjwDG #Trans

  7. Lynne M-F

    Oh my god MT @PatrickStrud: The Danish government is about to send a woman to her death. Her crime? Being transgender: http://t.co/6RsOIZvu

  8. Weeble

    Asylum seeker Fernanda Milan risks being sent to her death from Denmark: http://t.co/V0bAgclf – by @natachakennedy

  9. That's me that is

    RT @PatrickStrud: The Danish government is about to send a woman to her death. Her crime? Being transgender: http://t.co/Jdmm7HDa

  10. victoriadivine

    http://t.co/ADQSSusU

  11. Anna-Jayne Metcalfe

    Asylum seeker Fernanda Milan risks being sent to her death from Denmark: http://t.co/V0bAgclf – by @natachakennedy

  12. CRA

    Demo outside the Danish Embassy today at 5.30pm to protest the deportation of Guatemalan trans activist Fernanda Milan http://t.co/7qFYsF7X

  13. Holly

    The Danish government is about to send a woman to her death. Her crime? Being transgender: http://t.co/agtUsp20 (via @libcon)

  14. Elizabeth Seymour

    Please share and raise awareness for this poor girl's plight. If anybody is in London today, please join the… http://t.co/T2CnXRqW

  15. Calum Sherwood

    The Danish government is about to send a woman to her death. Her crime? Being transgender: http://t.co/agtUsp20 (via @libcon)

  16. Steph Farnsworth

    The Danish government is about to send a woman to her death. Her crime? Being transgender: http://t.co/agtUsp20 (via @libcon)

  17. Steph Farnsworth

    Being transgender is not a crime. Being transgender does not deserve death or rape http://t.co/vm5mfOmV

  18. Tom Coole

    The Danish government is about to send a woman to her death. Her crime? Being transgender: http://t.co/agtUsp20 (via @libcon)

  19. tamarisk

    Deporting this woman will result in her murder. Via @TimeChangeGirl, @PatrickStrud & @MmeGuillotine: http://t.co/CcroNmqa

  20. Stephen Donnan

    Being transgender is not a crime. Being transgender does not deserve death or rape http://t.co/vm5mfOmV

  21. Simon

    Deporting this woman will result in her murder. Via @TimeChangeGirl, @PatrickStrud & @MmeGuillotine: http://t.co/CcroNmqa

  22. Adele Retter

    Save Fernanda Milan: demo @ Danish embassy tomorrow | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/JADPKXhf via @libcon

  23. MerseyMal

    Save Fernanda Milan: demo @ Danish embassy tomorrow | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/uN1HQA8Y via @libcon

  24. Sundancin' Paul

    Being transgender is not a crime. Being transgender does not deserve death or rape http://t.co/vm5mfOmV

  25. Sundancin' Paul

    The Danish government is about to send a woman to her death. Her crime? Being transgender: http://t.co/agtUsp20 (via @libcon)

  26. Paris Lees

    Save Fernanda Milan: demo @ Danish embassy tomorrow | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/yZwcD0To via @libcon

  27. Jamie P

    Save Fernanda Milan: demo @ Danish embassy tomorrow | Liberal Conspiracy http://t.co/yZwcD0To via @libcon

  28. John Conway

    The Danish government is about to send a woman to her death. Her crime? Being transgender: http://t.co/agtUsp20 (via @libcon)

  29. Sarah Chantrey

    The Danish government is about to send a woman to her death. Her crime? Being transgender: http://t.co/agtUsp20 (via @libcon)

  30. Eva Bue Bitsch

    @radikale hjælp!! vis nu menneskelighed – vil de der kan ikke nok bruge deres magt til at redde fernanda milan's liv?? http://t.co/EZzDDGvP

  31. Beatriz Caicedo

    Sobre una connacional en peligro: http://t.co/vLDfq686

  32. marjolijn kok

    Today 5.30 Danish Embassy, London – Save Fernanda Milan. Demo to save transgender activist from being sent to death http://t.co/tiAo9Eyf

  33. glynis powell

    Save Fernanda Milan! Demo to save transgender activist from being sent to her death, today at 5:30 http://t.co/CChjbfod (ht @natachakennedy)

  34. Sophie Darling

    We should all take a moment to read and understand what's happening out there in our modern World? http://t.co/GyswXFYd #savefernandamilan

  35. Kara Rowe

    We should all take a moment to read and understand what's happening out there in our modern World? http://t.co/GyswXFYd #savefernandamilan

  36. Jane Magnet

    We should all take a moment to read and understand what's happening out there in our modern World? http://t.co/GyswXFYd #savefernandamilan

  37. Sophie Green

    We should all take a moment to read and understand what's happening out there in our modern World? http://t.co/GyswXFYd #savefernandamilan

  38. Annie Clements

    The Danish government is about to send a woman to her death. Her crime? Being transgender: http://t.co/agtUsp20 (via @libcon)

  39. Save Fernanda Milan

    We should all take a moment to read and understand what's happening out there in our modern World? http://t.co/GyswXFYd #savefernandamilan

  40. Trixie

    Save Fernanda Milan! Demo to save transgender activist from being sent to her death, today at 5:30 http://t.co/CChjbfod (ht @natachakennedy)





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