In 2020 alone, a Limassol transwoman suffered a near-fatal assault in her own home, the trans legal partner of a Cypriot citizen was deported, while a Cypriot transwoman continues to endure months of solitary confinement in an Egyptian jail, with little hope of regaining her liberty, Accept said on Saturday to mark Trans Day of Remembrance (TDoR).
The day is the annual recognition of victims of transphobic murder worldwide. Accept said it was highlighting the plight of a Cypriot transwoman imprisoned in Egypt, and the ongoing failure to pass Cyprus’ long-awaited Gender Recognition Law, the LGBTQ+ rights organisation also called for “an end to authorities’ systemic neglect of the island’s transgender community”.
It also said that between October 1, 2019 and September 30, 2020, the TDoR data gathered through the Trans Murder Monitoring project revealed that 350 trans and gender-diverse people had been registered as murdered, representing a 6 per cent increase in such killings since the 2019 update.
“With the victims being predominantly transwomen, aged, on average, 31 years old, and 50 per cent of those killed in Europe being migrants, it is clear authorities worldwide are failing to safeguard the well-being, dignity and right to life of trans and gender-variant people in their societies,” Accept said.
The organisation recently started a petition calling for the repatriation of the transwoman in Egypt to serve her sentence in Cyprus, “given that she has been held in solitary confinement since January, after having been entrapped into meeting an Egyptian policeman posing as a date, arrested and convicted of an incitement to commit debauchery”.
Sentenced to serve three years under Egyptian law, which does not recognise transgender identities, “Cyprus’ continued absence of a gender recognition law has left the transwoman in solitary confinement in Egypt’s prison system, given that her assigned male name and gender marker would ordinarily have seen her serving in a male jail,” it added.
It said that since January, the Cypriot national has been denied hormones and visits from anyone beyond her immediate family, lawyer and Cypriot embassy representatives, and her mental and physical wellbeing are reported as being in dangerous decline.
“Accept calls on the Egyptian and Cypriot authorities to work together to bring Tina back home so she can serve her sentence in Cyprus, something completely justifiable and just, as both governments have signed an extradition agreement to exchange citizens of both countries who have been arrested in the other country. We believe that bringing Tina back home is crucial to her wellbeing, both mentally and physically,” Accept said.
The petition can be found here: