23/02/2010 | Writer: KAOS GL

February 22, 2010
The Vancouver Sun

Rights groups concerned over the recent deaths of a number of transsexuals in Turkey expressed their worries in a letter to the Turkish government Monday

"Since November 2008, at least eight transgender women have been murdered in Ankara, Istanbul and Antalya," read the letter, transmitted to AFP, signed by Human Rights Watch and Turkish groups defending homosexuals and transsexuals.

In the most recent cases on February 8 in Antalya, a seaside town in the south, and on February 16 in Istanbul, killers stabbed repeatedly and cut the throats of two transsexuals.

"We are taking into account and appreciate the efforts by police to solve these crimes. However it is deeply troubling that incidents of murder and violence against transsexuals in Turkey continue unabated."

The rights groups, who also denounce violence against transsexuals coming from "some sectors of the police", called for authorities to include sexual orientation in legal plans to fight against discrimination.

They also called for police officers to receive training over issues of sexual identity.

In contrast to many other Muslim countries, Turkey does not repress homosexuality and some transsexuals have high-profile careers in the entertainment business.

However, many transsexuals and homosexuals in Turkey have been killed in "hate crimes", as social pressures and homophobic acts are high in the country.

Original Link of this News Article: Rights groups slam murders of transsexuals in Turkey

Tags: human rights