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Transgender Man Killed By Brother In Northwestern Pakistan

In Pakistan, transgender people are known officially as "third-gender" citizens. (file photo)
In Pakistan, transgender people are known officially as "third-gender" citizens. (file photo)

Pakistani officials say a transgender man was shot dead by his brother in northwest Pakistan in the second deadly attack in the region this week to target the long-oppressed community.

The incident took place on September 10 in Swabi, a district of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province, local police official Muhammad Fahim told RFE/RL.

The official said that the victim, identified as Saad, was returning home after performing at a dance party in the city of Rawalpindi, south of Islamabad, when his 14-year-old brother opened fire on him.

Police said they have detained the brother, Muhammad Hammad.

Earlier this week, unidentified gunmen opened fire on a group of transgender women on the outskirts of Peshawar, the capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, killing one of them and wounding another.

Farzana, the provincial head of Pakistan’s Transgender Association, told RFE/RL that 73 members of the transgender community have been killed in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa since 2015 while hundreds of others have been the victims of other forms of violent attacks.

Transgender people, known officially as "third-gender" citizens in Pakistan -- a group that includes cross-dressers, transsexuals, eunuchs, hermaphrodites, and transvestites -- face widespread violence, intimidation, and abuse despite multiple laws passed to protect them.

The community, estimated to number around 500,000, is known in the Urdu language as "hijras."

Many describe themselves as "professional wedding dancers," but supporters say they are often forced to earn income through begging and prostitution.

Following their official third-gender classification handed down by the Supreme Court in 2011, members of the community were granted the rights to vote and run for office.

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