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2 transgender women tortured, killed in Pakistan

Bodies recovered late Saturday from locked house in eastern Punjab province; police not yet certain of motive

A transgender Pakistani provides food to people during the Muslims' fasting month of Ramadan in Islamabad, Pakistan, Monday, May 27, 2019. (AP Photo/B.K. Bangash)
A transgender Pakistani provides food to people during the Muslims' fasting month of Ramadan in Islamabad, Pakistan, Monday, May 27, 2019. (AP Photo/B.K. Bangash)

MULTAN, Pakistan — Police in Pakistan said they have found the bodies of two transgender women who were tortured and beaten to death.

Senior officer Mohammad Ali Zia said the bodies were recovered late Saturday from a locked house in the Sahiwal district of the eastern Punjab province.

He said it’s unclear what motivated the killings, which appear to have taken place three days ago.

Transgender people are often subjected to abuse in conservative, Muslim-majority Pakistan. They are also among the victims of so-called honor killings carried out by relatives to punish perceived sexual transgressions.

Homosexuality is illegal in Pakistan, but the country simultaneously boasts among the world’s most liberal laws when it comes to gender identity, officially recognizing a third gender since 2009, and passing a law last May that allows various groups, including transgender people, to self-identify when reporting their gender on official documents.

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