A gang of dozens of men attacked two transgender women in Bekasi, West Java on Monday (19 November).
The men chased the two waria, an Indonesian trans female identity, stripped their clothes and attacked them with a metal rod, the Jakarta Post reports.
Some of the 50-strong gang were reportedly as young as 14. They pulled off one of the victim’s wig and cut the other’s hair.
‘You are a man, right? And your friend is a banci [transvestite]? Don’t you know that it’s a sin [to be transgender]’ the gang shouted, according to the post.
Onlookers reportedly assisted the two waria after the attack. They urged the two victims to report the incident to police, but they declined.
‘Another atrocious attack’
The LGBTI community in Indonesia is increasingly under threat.
Gay sex is not illegal in Indonesia. But, since early 2016, ‘government-driven moral panic’ over LGBTI Indonesians has engulfed the nation, according to rights groups.
Anti-LGBTI rhetoric from leaders, local legislation, and attacks on the community have all increased in the run up to elections next year.
‘This has been another atrocious attack on trans women’ said LGBTI activist Dede Oetomo.
‘This seems to be a result of the homo- and transphobic wave currently spreading in Indonesia’ he told Gay Star News.
‘One silver lining in the cloud is that the speed with which advocacy has occurred this time’ Oetomo said.