Braverman’s comments prompted strong criticism from campaigners, while the United Nations’ refugee agency rejected her call for the definition of who qualifies for protection to be “tightened”.
Ms Braverman claimed there had been a change over the years which has seen more people enter the system as the bar for qualification has lowered.
She described the “interpretive shift away from ‘persecution’, in favour of something more akin to a definition of ‘discrimination’, as well as a “similar shift away from a ‘well-founded fear’ toward a ‘credible’ or ‘plausible fear'”.
Suella Braverman is in the US to deliver her speech on migrationPA
The Home Secretary said the consequences of these shifts had been to expand the number of people who might qualify for asylum “and to lower the threshold for doing so”.
She added: “Let me be clear, there are vast swathes of the world where it is extremely difficult to be gay, or to be a woman.
“Where individuals are being persecuted, it is right that we offer sanctuary.
“But we will not be able to sustain an asylum system if in effect, simply being gay, or a woman, and fearful of discrimination in your country of origin, is sufficient to qualify for protection.”