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#WHRDAlert EL SALVADOR / Alarming increase in hate crimes and culture against LGBTTTI persons

February 24, 2017

Members of LGBTTTI communities

Activity
Sexual, reproductive and LBGTTTI rights

Attacks experienced
Hate crimes, Hate culture

FACTS – Last February 23rd, the Normal Collective released a statement denouncing the fact that between February 19th and 21st, at least 3 women were victims of hate crimes in El Salvador. In all cases, the públic statements of the Attorney General’s Office used the description “men dressed as women,” while one digital media used the word “transvestite.”

Both terms have a marked transphobic connotation that contributes to arousing and consolidating prejudice and manifestations of hate, discrimination and stigmatization of the transgender and transsexual community in El Salvador. Furthermore, the fact that the Attorney General’s Office fails to use adequate terms to refer to the victims may imply that without previous investigation, prosecutors are discarding gender identity and expression as a motive for the crimes.

We, of IM-Defensoras repudiate these hate crimes and express our concern over the hate culture that provokes them. Far from combatting this culture, State institutions contribute to it with the aforementioned expressions and procedures.

From our perspective, being a trans woman means carrying the defense of sexual and reproductive rights in one’s own body, identity and expression. Thus, hate crime and culture define a high-risk context for all members of LGBTTTI communities, whether or not they are organized and recognize themselves as women human rights defenders.

For all of the above, we demand that the Salvadoran government take all necessary measures to combat the hate culture, both inside its own institutions and in the sphere of the society and the news media influenced by fundamentalist religious groups that instigate and feed it with total impunity.

Finally, we call on all international organizations and bodies to stay on the alert regarding this situation.