(photo credit: JPOST STAFF)
An uptick in deadly violence against transgender women in El Salvador prompted the United Nations on Friday to call for an investigation into crimes against sexual minorities in the conservative Central American country.
So far this year, seven transgender women have been killed in El Salvador, according to the Geneva-based Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR). Local LGBT organizations put the death toll at 17 through the first four months of the year.
In 2016, at least 25 transgender women were killed over the course of the entire year, according to the local organizations.
Leading transgender activist Karla Avelar said local gang members have demanded money and made threats that forced her to flee her home six times in the past two years.