Angel fled Zimbabwe in fear of her life after police found her in bed with another woman five years ago. It’s taken most of the time since then for her to convince the Home Office that she is gay and will be persecuted if she returns. But how do you prove something you spent your life trying to hide?
In 2015, Angel found herself in an interview room in the north of England with a Home Office official whose job was to work out whether she was lying.
“How do I know I am a lesbian? How old was I when I knew? Who did I tell?” Angel recalls being asked.
“It is as if the Home Office expect a date and time.”
For seven hours, the interviewer picked at the threads of her life story.
The secret relationship with a girl at high-school and the betrayal of a family member she confided in about it.
Her forced marriage to an abusive husband in her 20s and the young daughter she had left behind in Zimbabwe.
Being raped by two men in her 30s who intended to “straighten her up”. And then, a few years later, the brutality from police when they discovered her in bed with a woman at a house-party.
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