The man who killed transgender Adriana in one of the apartments on Koghbatsi Street of Yerevan, Armenia was arrested on Sunday, August 20. He was found at the Bavra customs checkpoint while trying to cross the RA border [to Georgia]. He is a resident of Armavir region. The RA police announced about it today.
As is known, Adriana’s body was found by the rescue service.
Around 17:00, the 9-11 National Center for Crisis Management was alerted that smoke was visible from the window of one of the apartments on the 11th floor of the 1st building on the Koghbatsi Street.
They broke the door of the apartment, put out the fire and found a body on the floor with many knife stabs. Neighbors informed the rescuers that the murdered man was transgender.
Adriana was 28 years old. At the moment, criminal proceedings have been initiated in the case of murder. This is done by law enforcement officers and the lawyers of the NGO “Iravunqi Koghm” [Right Side] protecting the rights of LGBT people.
Lilit Martirosyan, the president of the NGO Right Side, calls the murdered transgender, 28-year-old Adriana, a “transgender woman”, while in the report of the RA Investigative Committee, she is mentioned as a 28-year-old man. According to Lilit Martirosyan, the person killed was one of his friends.
Back in 2019, during the parliamentary hearings on the national human rights agenda, Lilit announced the number 283 as the number of criminal acts committed against transgender people. She says that she does not have new figures today, but the picture of violence against transgender people by family and society is more severe, therefore the numbers have apparently increased.
“There have been four-five such cases in the last two-three months. One trans person was beaten in the entrance of the building, the policemen entered the house of another under the pretext of looking for drugs and confiscated 27 thousand dollars belonging to him. We spoke about it, but the police do not want to return the money. In the end, this ignorant society, the atmosphere of impunity led to the fact that a person was killed in her house,” she says in an interview with Forrights.am.
According to Lilit Martirosyan, Ariana, like other transgender people, went through a difficult journey, sex change surgery. She does not understand why the society does not accept transgender people, people who are born with a different body; when they realize that their body does not correspond to their gender identity, they want to live in other genders.
“I see people’s comments about this incident and I am amazed at their cruelty. They write: they do well; they kill, burn, slaughter. Is this the behavior of a Christian nation? Do you remember that, in fascist Germany, there were calls to burn this, to burn that, the world is ours, this is an enemy, etc.? Now the same is happening in Armenia. Our nation does not understand that one cannot live with fascism and hatred. We are now living the most complicated and difficult years in Armenia,” says Lilit.
Nikol Pashinyan’s government is often accused of encouraging and protecting LGBT people: do you feel such support from the government? The president of “Right side” NGO answers our question:
“In reality, there is no such thing. Those false narratives are created to mix the LGBT with this new government, to give political distractions. This is a form of LGBT targeting. At all times, this community has been a scapegoat: they have always tried to involve them in politics, to divert the society from the main topics through this group. If there is violence in the family, LGBT people are to blame; if there are political overthrows in society, we are to blame. I want to understand how long it will be like this. Meanwhile, crimes against LGBT individuals are not revealed, criminals are not punished.”
Lilit Martirosyan reminds the incident that happened with Jacqueline A. in 2018. on the night of February 28, they tortured her, tried to strangle her, tried to kill her, and burned the rented apartment on the Mashtots Avenue where she lived.
Let us note that, as it seems, fire is a special, medieval way of punishing transgenders,.
The transgender woman was taken to the hospital. The surgery lasted 9 hours. She was in a coma for 6 days. “This case is now in the ECHR; we did not succeed in the RA courts. The case was not seen as discrimination on the basis of gender. The abuser did not take responsibility, even though he was found.”
Jacqueline A.’s beater was born in Akhalkalak. He is married and has a young child. He told Jacqueline that he has had sex with transgender people in Georgia. It is noteworthy that, in this case, both the investigator and the prosecutor were on the side of the criminal. The investigator tried to convince Jacqueline that she had started the fire in her house. The criminal was not even arrested.