A transgender woman was beaten and stabbed in an apparent hate crime attack in Namibia.
According to the Windhoek Observer, which described the woman as “a transsexual,” 24-year-old Dorothy was walking home from a bar in Walvis Bay when she was harassed by a group of men because she did not “walk like a man.”
They then kicked and beat her until she lost consciousness. When she woke up, she discovered that she had been stabbed in the neck.
Dorothy, who says that she was attacked because of her gender identity and appearance, told the newspaper that she had not bothered to lay charges with the police, who she claims regularly dismiss and ridicule complaints from transgender people.
“We used to report these incidents before but the police always blamed us for the attacks so we stopped reporting them,” she said.
Transgender people are commonly described as “gay” in Namibia, often face discrimination and persecution, and have little protection under the law.
Consensual “sodomy” is illegal and could be used to prosecute sex between men, although this is not believed to have happened since the country’s independence in 1990.
Last month, Namibia’s Democratic Christian Voice (CDV) party said that gay people should be jailed until they “repent”.