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Israel border officers in home custody after brutal attack on transgender woman

Sunday, January 5, 2014
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TEL AVIV, Israel — A group of 11 men have been remanded to home custody after allegedly attacking a transgender woman early Saturday morning in Tel Aviv, reported the Daily Ha’aretz.

The suspects, residents of the city of Yavne and in their twenties, are reportedly officers in Israel’s Border Police force, although they were off-duty at the time, according to Yavniton, a local news outlet.

Tel Aviv

Tel Aviv

According to police reports, the 11 men spotted the transgender woman as they left a south Tel-Aviv nightclub, and proceeded to violently beat and attack her with an electric stun gun and pepper spray.

The men, who wore masks during the attack, attempted to flee the crime scene with two vehicles but were arrested by Israel’s police after a short pursuit.

The men have now been remanded to home custody pending an investigation and trial.

According to Ha’aretz, police recorded the motivation for the crime as “out of boredom” and “prank” rather than a transphobic hate crime.

The woman suffered light injuries and did not require medical treatment.

Yediot Aharonot Daily reported that, “in (an) insensitive oversight, police misidentified the transgendered woman’s sex in the report.”

Israel’s LGBT community was also outraged by widespread “transphobic” media coverage, which “explained” that a transgender woman is “a man dressed as a woman” and for also reporting the attack as a “prank.”

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Niki Sever, an Israeli transgender activist, told LGBTQ Nation: “I do not know what upset me more, that violent case occurred in my country or the way the media emphasized the identity of the victim.”

“The victim’s identity is very important as to emphasize that this was a transphobic hate crime” said Sever.

Project Gila, an Israeli transgender advocacy group, called upon media organizations to report transgender issues more responsibly.

In a statement Gila said the report is just the “tip of the icebergs of many incidents that go unreported.”

The Aguda, Israel’s main LGBT advocacy organization said “this brutal attack shows … how the transgender community primarily suffers from such violence.”

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