At a time when Egypt has become one of the most hostile places for the LGBT+ community in recent years, a transgender woman has been reportedly arrested on Tuesday and now she is in danger of being assaulted inside detention and/or set upon by police officers themselves.
Malak Kashif, an Egyptian transgender who became known in the media after her attempt to commit suicide earlier in 2018, has been reportedly detained on Tuesday after joining calls for anti-government protests that sparked on social media last week. This came following a train accident in Cairo last Wednesday week that left dozens dead.
Malak is not the only one arrested as part of the government’s crackdown amid calls for protests. However, her case as a transgender person in Egypt has lead hundreds of Egyptians to call for her release and support on the social media.
According to her lawyer, Malak has gone through a sex reassignment surgery previously. However, Malak’s gender on her national ID has not been changed yet due to the government’s system and the complicated paperwork she has to go through.
As such Malak’s lawyer is concerned about whether his client will now be imprisoned with women or men inmates due to this and which puts her in real danger of being assaulted.
Egyptians have rushed to thw social media to talk about Malak's dilemma and call for her support and which is putting the authorities in a fix.
Translation: “Please talk about Malak Al-Khashif. She is a transgender woman who was arrested yesterday by the Egyptian police. Egypt’s prisons are like graves and chambers for torture and sexual harassment but for a person like Malak, the chances of abuse will be doubled.”
While the reasons behind Malak’s arrest are not clear yet, social media activists confirmed it came after she joined calls for anti-government protests earlier this week.
Translation: “Malak Al-Kashif’s arrest as she called for anti-Sisi protests on March 1. She is a transgender woman who was born male and has changed sex, but fears to deal with her as a man and putting her with male inmates are rising because she might be sexually assaulted.”
The LGBT+ community in Egypt has been facing massive crackdown and media blackout since the Cairo concert incident in 2017 when several young people had waved rainbow flags. Since then, dozens have been arrested and the media council has banned the appearance of homosexuals on any media outlet.
Translation: “Malak Al Kashif is a transsexual woman and after her detention she will be dealt with as a male and be imprisoned with male inmates and this is mainly due to the fact that her ID inform is taking too long to be processed changed and she is still a male according to her ID.”
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