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Thursday, 27 April 2017

Silence and Fear a Year After a Prominent Bangladeshi Activist's Murder

Silence and Fear a Year After a Prominent Bangladeshi Activist's Murder
- For many in Bangladesh, LGBTI activist Xulhaz Mannan was one of those people who only needed a first name. A bit like Cher, Voltaire, or Moses, people in Dhaka know about Xulhaz.
Before he was murdered in April 2016, he founded the nation’s first LGBTI magazine, was an employee of the U.S. embassy in Dhaka, and organized the largest public HIV testing event ever to happen in Bangladesh. Xulhaz was also a friend, mentor, and “inspiration” to hundreds of young men.* At “working parties” in his living room, he coached them through the stages of researching, writing, editing, and publishing a magazine. He guided young activists who wanted to advocate for better police protection for trans people. He was also, as one LGBTI activist in Dhaka told me, the “walking center of gay social life” in Dhaka.