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United Kingdom Asylum and Immigration Tribunal
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Cite as:  UKAIT 00065,  UKIAT 00065,  UKIAT 65
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TB (PSG – women) Iran  UKIAT 00065
Date of hearing: 30 November 2004
Date Determination notified: 09 March 2005
|Secretary of State for the Home Department||RESPONDENT|
The Adjudicator's Determination
"i. The Appellant's father is a Colonel of the Entezami Force (police force) and a member of Etelaat (intelligence service). He was wounded twice in the war between Iran and Iraq. Due to an injury the Appellant's father suffered a personality change he became moody and unpredictable. He started berating and hurting the family. The Appellant's mother wanted to get a divorce.
ii. In 1989 the Appellant and her mother left her father and went to Mashad and stayed there for five days. On the sixth day the Authorities raided the house and arrested the Appellant's mother who was accused of escaping from home and kidnapping the Appellant. The Appellant and her mother were required to return home and her mother was badly beaten by her father.
iii. In 1991 the Appellant's father attacked her mother and step- sister. They were taken to hospital. The Appellant's uncle encouraged her mother to make a complaint to the Authorities against her father. Four months after the complaint the Appellant's uncle was accused of political activities against the regime and he was executed. The Appellant's father threatened to have the Appellant and her mother killed if they did anything against him.
iv. In 1996 the Appellant's mother tried to commit suicide.
v. On 9 July 2001 the Appellant and her mother were in her aunt's building. They saw demonstrators attacked in the street by the security forces and the Appellant and her mother opened the door of their building and let some of them in. The Appellant and her mother were arrested. Haj [AR], a friend of the Appellant's father arranged for them to be released. He was a Mullah and head Aghidati-Siasi Department of Entezami Forces. He was a friend of the Appellant's father.
vi. In 2003 the Appellant obtained a diploma in mathematics and passed an entrance exam to go to university. On 23 October 2003 the Appellant's father told her that Haj [A R] wanted to marry the Appellant. The Appellant's father was very pleased. Mr AR was about 60 years of age and already married with four children. The Appellant wished to continue her studies at university and she did not wish to marry. Mr AR gave the Appellant a ring and they were formally engaged. A wedding date was set. The Appellant and her mother decided to leave Iran and go to the UK.
vii. On 4 November 2003 the Appellant and her mother arrived in the United Kingdom.
viii. On 6 November 2003 the Appellant's father telephoned the Appellant's step-sister and demanded that the Appellant and her mother return to Iran."
"20. In Shah and Islam (1999) IMM AR 283 the House of Lords held that women in Pakistan constituted "a particular social group". In Iran, as in Pakistan there is discrimination against women in matters of fundamental human rights on the ground that they are women. I am persuaded by the evidence presented to me that there is institutionalised discrimination against women by organs of the State in Iran. I have to consider whether the Appellant will face persecution if she were to be returned to Iran. The Appellant could have attempted to seek redress through the proper Authorities before seeking international protection. At question 44 of the asylum interview the Appellant stated that the actions of her father and the Mullah were illegal, but at no time did she seek protection from the relevant Authorities in Iran.
21. Even if I am wrong that there is a real risk for the Appellant in her home area, she could get round that risk by moving elsewhere within Iran. It would not be unduly harsh to expect the Appellant to relocate. She is a young woman and while she might find it difficult to find housing and employment these matters are not determinative.
22. Mr Behbahani submitted that the Appellant's rights under Article 3 of the 1950 Convention are engaged. For the reasons I have set out above, I am not satisfied that the Appellant faces a real risk of suffering inhuman or degrading treatment, were she to return to Iran."
The Appellant's Submissions
"It is necessary to start with Shah and Islam. We emphasise in doing so that Lord Steyn and Lord Hoffmann said: Everything depends on the evidence and findings of fact in the particular case: generalisations as to the place of women in particular countries are out of place when dealing with Refugee Status;  2 AC 629 and 635 E 655 F."
He also asked us to note the recent determination of the Tribunal in JO (paragraph 18) where the Tribunal had stated:
"However we do think it arguable that Miss Finch successfully identified the existence in Nigeria of a combination of legal and social measures of discrimination sufficient to demarcate women as a particular social group. We accept that these may not be as comprehensive as those identified by the House of Lords when they reached their judgment in Shah and Islam  2 AC 629 as obtaining for women in Pakistan. However, in our view their Lordships made clear in their judgment that the PSG category should not be interpreted narrowly. The fact that since Shah and Islam women have not been found by the IAT or the courts to be a PSG in more than one or two countries suggests to us that too little regard has been paid to the fact that all that was required in Shah and Islam (per Lord Hoffman) was the existence of legal and social conditions which were discriminatory against women. Possibly also there has been too much focus on rejecting PSG arguments by reference to sub-categories (e.g. women at risk of FGM, as at one point in this case trafficked women). The more delimited the proposed category, the greater the prospect there is of circularity in definition."
(i) The sufficiency of protection available, and
(ii) The issue of internal flight.
(i) Iranian law dictated that the Appellant would not be able to marry without her father's permission (Section 2.2 of the Enayat report.)
(ii) Iranian law not only offered no real practical protection against violence of the father but also effectively legitimised ill treatment and even murder. (Sections 2.3 and 3 of the Enayat report, an attachment to the Enayat report "Shirin Abadi as the legal punishment for murdering one's child", and a Canadian Refugee Board Report, "Domestic Violence and Murder" contained at page 108 of the Appellant's bundle)."
(iii) Iranian law empowered the Mullah with "exceptional influence" against the Appellant. (Section 2.4 of the Enayat Report, an extract from the UN Special Rapporteur on Violence Against Women, dated March 2004 – page 124 of the Appellant's bundle, a Human Rights Report, page 95 of the Appellant's bundle, and a further UNHCR Report "Independence of the Judiciary" pages 137, 138 and 145 of the Appellant's bundle.)
(iv) In addition to the above the general and discriminatory nature of Iranian law and custom would add obstacles to the appellant trying to obtain sufficiency of protection. (These he noted at section 1 of the Enayat Report, the report from Professor Haleh Afashar – page 39 of the bundle, and Elizabeth Mayer pages 10, 11, 19 and 21 of the Appellant's bundle."
"All in all, the situation in the Islamic Republic of Iran is a very complex and complicated one. It is extremely difficult to apply very strict and clear guidelines when assessing the claim of an Iranian asylum seeker. Apart from the clear cases in which, based on objective facts and events, there is an evident problem of credibility, in other cases in which credibility is not the issue but the issue is interpretation of the level of persecution with regard to the individual case, one should always take into account global or arbitrariness and inconsistency in application of the legal system that is part of every day life in Iran. This is indeed one of the commitments that President Khatami has promised to address whilst stressing the importance of the Rule of Law. However it is clear that the situation is still far from being one in which the interpretation of Rules and application of the law is clear cut and consistent. One should therefore liberally use the principle of the benefit of the doubt when credibility is not the issue with respect to Iranian asylum claims." (UNHCR Report page 181 of the bundle).
"The head of the 'Aqidati' bureau of the Law Enforcement Forces would enjoy considerable influence. Such an individual would certainly have been able to arrange the client's (Appellant's) release from detention following the 9 July 2001 demonstrations in Tehran…
The head of the Aqidati is also the person to whom the [Appellant's] father would have appealed for help in rescuing his wife and daughter even if he were not friends with the man…
The 'favour' as Iranian favours, even among friends routinely do, would have generated a cultural 'debt'.
So the father's refusal to arrange the requested marriage would have meant a loss of goodwill by someone who could destroy him and would have put him in a potentially hazardous position. His acceptance of the alliance, on the other hand, would have brought general rewards. There can be little doubt that a woman who is the object of such an arrangement would fear a reaction whether she went along with her father's plans or rejected them.
There are many ways in which punishment for the 'slight' would have been meted out by the person in the Mullah's position. For example through what is known as the 'Gozinesh' system, which was put into place soon after the 1979 revolution. Gozinesh is a process for 'selection' to ensure that those admitted to universities and other institutions of higher learning, or to state employment, (and in other large private sector institutions), conform ideologically. The process has ideological and security components….
A word from the Mullah could prevent [the Appellant] from ever taking a university place and having access to the more respectable or desirable types of employment (indeed this would be one of the most difficult problems she would face if she were to attempt to relocate. Since Gozinesh background checks are conducted on a nationwide basis any application for say a secretarial job in a government, or indeed many private organisations would immediately reveal her whereabouts.
Once married [the Appellant] would, except by her husband's consent, have little hope of obtaining a divorce."
(i) The last three paragraphs of the Appellant's statement (A11, A12), here the Appellant had stated:"My father threatened even to kill me himself if I did not marry Haj [A] and also told me that Haj [A] could be dangerous if I did not marry him. Two days later Haj [A] visited me and told me that he loved me and threatened me again. He gave me 24 hours to think about it. We knew there is no safe place in Iran for us and they would find us easily…the next day Haj [A] and his sisters came to our house and gave me a ring and we were engaged formally"Also in the last paragraph it was stated:(ii) At questions 9 and 10 of the interview record sheet (B4) the Appellant was asked: "Who threatened you?" and she replied: "The Mullah and my father". She was then asked: "What did they threaten you with?" the reply to this was: "They threatened me that he will bring up again the history of my criminal case and also my mother's life, she is sick already. …I was arrested in a student demonstration in 2001. I was in the uprising of students and I brought a few of the students to my aunt's house, which was in the area. A few of the security guards saw us and we went into that house and were dragged out." (iii) Replies given by the Appellant to questions 50-58 in the interview record (B12 and B13), he submitted also indicated real risks to the Appellant from the Mullah. In these questions the Appellant stated that the Mullah would kill her if she refused to marry him (and that her father would do the same). When asked why she considered the Mullah was capable of carrying out the threat she replied: "Because he has done things – killing is nothing to him, he has ordered to kill my uncle my mother's brother. He told us"."On 6/11/03 my dad phoned SD (sister-in-law) and threatened us if we did not go back to Iraq. He said he would force us to go back by Iranian Embassy. We were worried about my uncle but we knew that they would kill us if we go back to Iran."
(iv) In the answer to the final question 72, the Appellant had replied to the question: "Who do you fear? And replied: "from my father and that Mullah." He submitted that these references indicated not only the substantive risk to the Appellant, at the hands of her father, but also those from the Mullah. In addition the position and influence of the Mullah would, in his submission, mean that the organs of the Iranian state could be brought into play as part of the persecution against the Appellant under the influence and direction of the Mullah.
"97 On 3 January 2003 the Special Rapporteur sent a communication to the government in connection with information received regarding the existence of violence and discrimination against women in the Islamic Republic of Iran. According to information received, women face discrimination in the criminal justice system and are subjected to forms of torture, such as stoning, amputation and blinding, which amount to torture, forced marriages, high levels of domestic violence and sexual violence at the hands of gangs and organised crime rings. Furthermore, information was transmitted of allegations of widespread violence against women prisoners and political opponents that purportedly took place primarily during the time of Ayatollah Khomenini was in power and included alleged rape, torture and exclusion of many women. The special Rapporteur expressed particular concern about the reported involvement and senior state and religious officials in these crimes, and about allegations of continued torture and sexual abuse of women prisoners."
The Respondent's Submissions
(i) On the basis of the submissions put to us, and our own consideration of the determination of the Adjudicator, was that decision one that contained any material error of law?
(ii) If so, were we able to reach our own conclusions on the evidence before us?
(iii) In reaching those conclusions is there a real risk of serious maltreatment in breach of Article 3 of the ECHR on return?
(iv) Is there a real risk of the Appellant being persecuted for reasons of one or more of the five Refugee Convention reasons?
(v) If the answer to (iii) and /or (iv) is "Yes," is an Internal relocation alternative available to this Appellant?
"55. Summary of Conclusions
A. The Adjudicator was correct to conclude that the respondent could not show a Convention ground of political opinion but incorrect to conclude that he had made out the ground of membership of a particular social group (PSG). In deciding that private landowners were a PSG in current-day Colombia the Adjudicator overlooked the judgment of the House of Lords in Shah and Islam  2 AC 629 and in consequence applied the wrong criteria for evaluating the PSG category. She also erred in failing to consider whether there was a causal nexus between the respondent's well-founded fear of persecution and this alleged PSG.
B. Taking stock of post-Shah and Islam cases both here and abroad, the Tribunal considers that the basic principles that should govern assessment of a claim based on the PSG category are as follows:
(i) in order to succeed under the Refugee Convention a claimant who has a well-founded fear of persecution must show not only the existence of a PSG (the "PSG question"), but also a causal nexus between his membership of the PSG and that fear (the "causal nexus question");
The PSG Question
(ii) the PSG ground should be viewed as a category of last resort;
iii) persecution may be on account of more than one ground If the principal ground is membership of a PSG, then focus should be on that;
(iv) the PSG ground must be interpreted in the light of the basic principles and purposes of the Refugee Convention;
(v) if the PSG ground had been intended as an all-embracing category, the five enumerated grounds would have been superfluous;
(vi) the PSG ground is further limited by the Convention's integral reliance on anti-discrimination notions inherent in the basic norms of International Human Rights Law;
(vii) applying the eiusdem generis principle to the other 4 grounds, the PSG category must be concerned with discrimination directed against members of the group because of a common immutable characteristic;
(viii) a broad range of groups can potentially qualify as a PSG, including private landowners;
(ix) but whether any particular group is a PSG in fact must always be evaluated in the context of historical time and place;
(x) in order to avoid tautology, to qualify as a PSG it must be possible to identify the group independently of the persecution;
(xi) however the discrimination which lies at the heart of every persecutory act can assist in defining the PSG. Previous arguments excluding any identification by reference to such discrimination were misconceived;
(xii) a PSG cannot normally consist in a disparate collection of individuals;
(xiii) for a PSG to exist it is a necessary condition that its members share a common immutable characteristic. Such a characteristic may be innate or non-innate. However, if it is the latter, then the non-innate characteristic will only qualify if it is one which is beyond the power of the individual to change except at the cost of renunciation of core human rights entitlements;
(xiv) it is not necessary, on the other hand, for such a group to possess the attributes of cohesiveness, interdependence, organisation or homogeneity;
(xv) there is nothing in principle to prevent the size of the PSG being large (e.g. women), but if the claim relies on some refinement or sub-category of a larger group, care must be taken over whether the resultant group is still definably independently of their persecution;
(xvi) a PSG can be established by reference to discrimination from state agents or non-state agents (actors) of persecution;
(xvii) it is not necessary in order to qualify as a PSG that a person actually has the characteristics of the group in question. It is enough that he will be perceived to be a member of the group.
The Causal Nexus Question
C. The words "for reasons of" require a causal nexus between actual or perceived membership of the PSG and well-founded fear of persecution. Caution should be exercised against applying a set theory of causation. In Shah and Islam and the Australian High Court case of Chen no final choice was made between "but for" and "effective cause" tests, but the "but for" test was said to require a taking into account of the context in which the causal question was raised and of the broad policy of the Convention."
"63. In our judgment, the following conclusions ought to be drawn. First, women in Pakistan formed a social group not just because they were women, but because they were also discriminated against. This appears in the speeches of all three in the majority, and indeed from the rejection of that proposition by Lord Millett. Second, it appears inescapably from the way in which the discrimination has been described that it includes legislative, judicial and police discrimination in the way in which women could obtain, and indeed suffer from seeking, state protection. The lack of state protection is inherent in the discrimination relied on.
64. Third, the women were not persecuted "for reason of" their membership of their group by the husbands against whom the state was unwilling or the women were afraid to seek the state's protection. Whilst that would have been a possible analysis, the majority, confirmed by the rejection of their reasoning by Lord Millet, clearly rejected as unrealistic the view that the husbands were persecuting their wives for a Convention reason. It was the serious harm done by the husbands in combination with the states inaction in providing protection or reinforcing of the harm when protection was sought, which gave rise to the persecution and to the persecution for a Convention reason.
65. Fourth, whether such circumstances give rise to or evidence a particular social group depends very much on the circumstances within any country at the relevant time, and the extent, nature and intensity of the social and state discrimination including the real risk that seeking protection would rebound in further serious ill-treatment. The same is true of whether there is persecution, or persecution for a Convention reason or a lack of state protection.
66. Thus, this is a case, on the particular evidence as to the circumstances in Pakistan, of state persecution for a Convention reason. Discriminatory lack of state protection was a component of persecution, and of the reason for the persecution and the availability of state protection, but it was also part of the definition of the social group through its relevance to discrimination.
67. The crucial issue which is relevant to the definition of the group, though not necessarily determinative of it, relevant to persecution, to the ascertainment of the Convention reason, and indeed to the final component of the overall refugee definition is the nature of the state's protection."
BLOCKQUOTE>"22. It is clear from the above for the PSG requirement to be met in respect of women in a particular country, there must not only be a combination of measures of legal and societal discrimination; these must also reach a certain level and intensity: see paragraphs 65 and 79: "what is striking about evidence in Pakistan was the widespread and intense nature of the discrimination"".
'Conclusions as to 'particular social group'
36. Therefore, the determination of whether a group falls within the definition of 'particular social group' in Article 1A(2) of the Convention can be summarised as follows. First, the group must be identifiable by a characteristic or attribute common to all members of the group. Secondly, the characteristic or attribute common to all members of the group cannot be shared fear of the persecution. Thirdly, the possession of that characteristic or attribute must distinguish the group from society at large. Borrowing the language of Dawson J in Applicant A, a group that fulfils the first two principles, but not the third, is merely a 'social group' and not a 'particular social group'. As this court has repeatedly emphasised, identifying accurately the 'particular social group' alleged is vital for the accurate application of the applicable law to the case in hand'.
'The general principle is not that the group must be recognised or perceived within society, but rather that the group must be distinguished from the rest of society.'
'6. The first, "the protected characteristics" approach (sometimes referred to as an "immutability" approach) examines whether a group is united by an immutable characteristic or by a characteristic that is so fundamental to human dignity that a person should not be compelled to forsake it. An immutable characteristic may be innate (such as sex or ethnicity) or unalterable for other reasons (such as the historical fact of a past association, occupation or status). Human rights norms may help to identify characteristics deemed so fundamental to human dignity that one ought not to be compelled to forego them. A decision-maker adopting this approach would examine whether the asserted group is defined: (1) by an innate, unchangeable characteristic, (2) by a past temporary or voluntary status that it is unchangeable because of its historical permanence, or (3) by a characteristic or association this is so fundamental to human dignity that group members should not be compelled to forsake it. Applying this approach, courts and administrative bodies in a number of jurisdictions have concluded that women, homosexuals and families, for example, can constitute a particular social group within the meaning of Article 1A(2).
7. The second approach examines whether or not a group shares a common characteristic which makes them a cognizable group or sets them apart from society at large. This has been referred to as the "social perception" approach. Again, women, families and homosexuals have been recognised under this analysis as particular social groups, depending on the circumstances of the society in which they exist.
10. Given the varying approaches, and the protection gaps which can result, UNHCR believes that the two approaches ought to be reconciled.
11. The protected characteristics approach may be understood to identify a set of groups that constitute the core of the social perception analysis. Accordingly, it is appropriate to adopt a single standard that incorporates both dominant approaches:
A particular social group is a group of persons who share a common characteristic other than their risk of being persecuted, or who are perceived as a group by society. The characteristic will often by one which is innate, unchangeable, or which is otherwise fundamental to identity, conscience or the exercise of one's human right.
12. This definition includes characteristics which are historical and therefore cannot be changed,and those which, though it is possible to change them, ought not to be required to be changed because they are so closely linked to the identity of the person or are an expression of fundamental human rights. It follows that sex can properly be within the ambit of the social group category,with women being a clear example of a social subset defined by innate and immutable characteristics, and who are frequently treared differently to men.
13. If a claimant alleges a social group that is based on a characteristic determined to be neither unalterable or fundamental, further analysis should be undertaken to determine whether the group is nonetheless perceived as a cognizable group in that society. So, for example, if it were determined that owning a shop or participating in a certain occupation in a particular society is neither unchangeable nor a fundamental aspect of human identity, a shopkeeper or members of a particular profession might nonetheless constitute a particular social group if in the society they are recognised as group which sets them apart.'
'(d) A group shall be considered to form a particular social group where in particular:
- Members of that group share an innate characteristic or common background that cannot be changed, or share a characterise or belief that is so fundamental to their identity or conscience that a person should not be forced to renounce it; and
- that group has a distinct identity in the relevant country, because it is perceived as being different by the surrounding society;
Depending on the circumstances in the country of origin, a particular social group might include a group based on a common characteristic of sexual orientation. Sexual orientation cannot be understood to include acts considered to be criminal in accordance with national law of the Member States: Gender related aspects might be considered, without by themselves alone creating a presumption for the applicability of this Article;'
'In UNHCR's view, the term "social group" should be interpreted in a manner open to the diverse and change nature of groups in various societies and to evolving international human rights norms. Two main schools of thought as to what constitutes a social group within the meaning of the 1951 Convention are reflected in the Directive. The "protected characteristics approach" is based on an immutable characteristic or a characteristic so fundamental to human dignity that a person should not be compelled to forsake it. The "social perception approach" is based on a common characteristic which creates a cognizable group that sets it apart from the society at large. Whilst the results under the two approaches may frequently converge, this is not always the case. To avoid any protection gaps, UNHCR therefore recommends that member States reconcile the two approaches to permit alternative, rather than cumulative, application of the two concepts.
States have recognised women, families, tribes, occupational groups and homosexuals as constituting a particular social group for the purpose of the 1951 Convention. To avoid misinterpretation, UNHCR would encourage Member States to provide in their legislation for further examples of "sexual orientation". Other examples would be gender, age, disability, and health status.
With respect to the provision that "[g]ender related aspects might be considered, without by themselves alone creating a presumption for the applicability of the article", UNHCR notes that courts and administrative bodies in a number of jurisdictions have found that women, for example, can constitute a particular social group within the meaning of Article 1A(2). Gender is a clear example of a social subset of persons who are defined by innate and immutable characteristics and who are frequently subject to differentiated treatment and standards. This does not mean that all women in the society qualify for refugee status. A claimant must demonstrate a well-founded fear of persecution based on her membership in the particular social group.
Even though less has been said in relation to the age dimension into interpretation and application of international refugee law, the range of potential claims where age is a relevant factor is broad, including forcible or under-age recruitment into military service, (forced) child marriage, female genital mutilisation, child trafficking, or child pornography or abuse. Some claims that are age-related may also include a gender element and compound the vulnerability of the claimant.
UNHCR encourages States, in cooperation with UNHCR, to adopt guidelines on assessing the asylum applications of women and children.'
"In Iran, as in Pakistan there is discrimination against women in matters of fundamental human rights on the ground that they are women. I am persuaded by the evidence presented to me that there is institutional discrimination against women by organs of the state in Iran."
"… if the position was not made clear by the decision of Shah and Islam, it is clear by the decision of the Australian High Court in S v MIMA  HCA 25, that we would apply also in this jurisdiction. The Adjudicator's decision was correct on her findings of fact as to the position of women in Kenya and society. Secondly, the Adjudicator properly identified that that constituted persecution. Thirdly she concluded that persecution feared was due to P's membership of the social group. It was also because of the membership of that social group that she would not receive adequate protection from the police, who on behalf of the state had the responsibility for providing protection for her. Fourthly and finally, the Adjudicator was entitled to find that P's fear of persecution was well founded." (Italics added)
'22. There may also arise situations where a claimant may be unable to show that the harm inflicted or threatened by the non-State actor is related to one of the five grounds. For example, in the situation of domestic abuse, a wife may not always be able to establish that her husband is abusing her based on her membership in a social group, political opinion or other Convention ground. Nonetheless, if the State is unwilling to extend protection based on one of the five grounds, then she may be able to establish a valid claim for refugee status: the harm visited upon her by her husband is based on the State's unwillingness to protect her for reasons of a Convention ground.
23. The reasoning may be summarised as follows. The causal link may be satisfied: (1)where either there is a real risk of being persecuted at the hands of a non-State actor for reasons which are related to one of the Convention grounds, whether or not the failure of the State to protect the claimant is Convention related; (2) where the risk of being persecuted at the hands of a non-State actor is unrelated to a Convention ground, but the inability or unwillingness of the State to offer protection is for a Convention reason.'
i) There are substantive material errors of law in the determination of the Adjudicator.
ii) We are able to reach our own conclusions on the totality of the evidence before us, including substantive objective evidence and jurisprudence, not provided to the Tribunal in ZH. We were also able to rely on the accepted credibility of the appellant's own evidence.
iii) There are substantive reasons for concluding there is a real risk of a breach of Article 3 of the ECHR if this country returns this appellant to Iran. Noting the logic from the starred determination of the Tribunal in Kacaj* we consider that this appellant would also be at a reasonable likelihood of being persecuted on return to Iran.
iv) The real risk of this appellant suffering serious harm on return to Iran is primarily for non-Convention reasons (the vindictiveness and retribution of the appellant's father and the Mullah). However, as we consider there would also be a failure of state protection against that serious harm, we find that there is a causal nexus between the persecution (accepting that: Persecution = failure of state protection + serious harm) and her membership of a particular social group. We find therefore that the appellant is at a real risk of being persecuted for reasons of her membership of a particular social group namely: "Young Iranian Women who refuse to enter into arranged marriages ".
v) The findings of the Adjudicator in relation to internal relocation are substantively flawed as they lack reasoning. We find that an internal relocation alternative is not available to the appellant in the circumstances of this case.
vi) We find therefore the appellant is a refugee within the meaning of Article 1A(2) of the Refugee Convention and there is a real risk of a breach of Article 3 of the ECHR.
A R MACKEY
Approved for electronic promulgation