2 Pakistani transsexuals allegedly beaten to death by Saudi police
Two transsexual persons from Pakistan arrested by Saudi police during a raid on a ‘third gender’ party later died in custody, a newspaper says. The report claims both were tortured to death by law enforcement officers.
The raid targeted a rest house in Riyadh, where a formal Khawaja Sara meeting was taking place, the Pakistani newspaper Express Tribune said. The Khawaja Sara is a Pakistani term referring to ‘third gender’, or people identifying themselves as transvestites, transsexuals and transgender. Most of the attendees were from Pakistan’s Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, according to Qamar Naseem, a transgender rights activist.
Among the 35 people apprehended during the raid were Amna, 35, and Meeno, 26. Both died in police custody later on Tuesday, the report said adding that the two were packed in sacks and thrashed with sticks in prison.
“Torturing humans after throwing them into bags and beating them with sticks is inhumane,” Naseem told the newspaper.
“No one is there to save them as the life of a transgender is not of any value to anyone, not even for our own government.”
Saudi authorities consider any blending of gender roles, including cross-dressing, as varieties of homosexuality, which is criminalized in the theocratic kingdom. Saudi courts have a record of sentencing men to prison terms and flogging for dressing in women’s clothes wearing women’s jewelry.
Police raids on private parties held by members of LGBT community, including foreign nationals, are conducted regularly in Saudi Arabia.