(Immigration and Asylum Chamber) PA/03390/2017
THE IMMIGRATION ACTS
Heard at Glasgow
Decision & Reasons Promulgated
on 11 January 2019
on 24 January 2019
UPPER TRIBUNAL JUDGE MACLEMAN
(ANONYMITY DIRECTION NOT MADE)
For the Appellant: Mr A Govan, Senior Home Office Presenting Officer
For the Respondent: Ms N Loughran, of Loughran & Co, Solicitors
DECISION AND REASONS
1. Parties are as above, but the rest of this determination refers to them as they were in the FtT.
2. The SSHD appeals against the decision of FtT Judge Handley, promulgated on 29 May 2018.
3. The nub of the grounds is that the appellant is married; the judge did not find her generally credible; did not accept that she is a Pentecostal Christian or that she escaped from military service; noted at  that married women are exempt from military service; and contradicted himself by allowing the appeal because her liability to military service carries a risk of persecution.
4. The grounds proceed on the assumption that the appellant is married. However, her evidence, recorded at , was that the marriage ceremony in which she engaged was not one recognised by the authorities. The judge expressed no conclusion on the matter. Thus, there is no finding to justify the assumption in the grounds, and the evidence is that, legally, the appellant is not married.
5. The grounds are based on an unwarranted assumption, and disclose no error.
6. That conclusion disposes of the appeal to the UT, but I also note the following.
7. Although there has been an update, representatives agreed that the position continues to be as set out at section 7 of the respondent's Country Policy and Information Note, version 4.0, October 2016. This strongly suggests that the authorities would not extend exemption through marriage to any relationship which does not legally constitute a marriage.
8. There also appeared to be force in the submission by Ms Loughran that the proposition that married women are exempt from risk is supported only by some of the background evidence, and not by the country guidance given by the UT, which had that background evidence before it.
9. The decision of the First-tier Tribunal shall stand.
10. No anonymity direction has been requested or made.
11 January 2019
Upper Tribunal Judge Macleman