Response stories

Protecting the rights of transgender women in Tajikistan

In modern Tajikistan, as in many countries, transgender people face serious violations of their rights, including discrimination and harassment. In this context, we consider a case that illustrates the struggle of the LGBT community in Tajikistan for their rights and freedom.

The story of Renata (name changed) provides an important example. Renata decided to return to her home country from Russia, where she was working and living, in order to change her gender status in a new passport. However, her plans were seriously disrupted upon arrival. Police officers took an interest in her personal life when Renata went to the police station to support her friend who had been detained. After the law enforcers learned that she was transgender, obsessive intense interrogation activities began and her cell phone, which contained many personal details, was seized. Although Renata was subsequently released, they did not return her phone to her and continued to monitor its contents. The client was subsequently invited back to the station and accused of sending pornography, which was actually pictures of the breast surgery process sent to her by her friend.

REActors were able to provide Renata with legal protection by finding a lawyer willing to take on her case and defend her rights. Moreover, Renata did not have sufficient financial means to leave the country, as she did not believe in a positive outcome of the trial. As a consequence, the transgender woman decided to leave her phone and seek help in finding financial means to leave the country. REActors decided to express official support on behalf of the community organization and sent a letter to friendly non-governmental organizations, including ECOM. In response, they expressed their willingness to provide financial support in the amount of 750 USD, which made it possible for Renata to purchase a ticket and leave Tajikistan.

Thanks to the funds received, Renata was able to start a new life in St. Petersburg. Two months later, the case against her was closed and her personal belongings were returned to her and mailed back to Russia. REActors are proud to have been able to help Renata overcome the difficulties she faced and to protect her right to freedom and self-expression according to her own wishes. This case highlights the importance of protecting the rights of transgender people and supporting them in their struggle for equality and freedom.

Renata is currently in Russia, but her life here has become much more difficult due to the introduction of new laws concerning the LGBTQ+ community. These laws create unacceptable conditions for transgender people and members of the LGBTQ+ community in general. In an effort to ensure her safety and a favorable psychosocial state, Renata is looking to relocate to another country where she can live and express herself fully.

Renata expressed her deep gratitude for the support provided by the REActors during difficult moments in her life. This support was crucial for her and enabled her to start a new chapter in her life, protecting her right to freedom and self-expression. Currently in search of a better place for her life, Renata remains in contact with the organization, which continues to support her from afar and stands by her side during this important transition period.

This case highlights the importance of continuing to fight for the rights and freedom of the LGBTQ+ community in different countries, as well as the need to support and protect those who face discrimination and persecution because of their gender and sexual identity.

Also read:

Triumph of Law in Tajikistan: Rustam’s story of fighting for justice

Tajikistan: Overcoming stigma and restoring family relationships