The International Institute on Race, Equality and Human Rights (“Race & Equality”) and the Colombian organization Caribe Afirmativo [Affirmative Caribbean] condemn the attack against Ludwika Vega, a trans woman who serves as coordinator of the Asociación Nicaragüense de Transgeneras (ANIT – Transgender Association of Nicaragua), and demand that authorities carry out a thorough investigation of the incident.
According to information received by Race and Equality, two men riding a motorcycle arrived at ANIT’s office in Managua around 8:00pm on Tuesday, September 10th and found Ludwika alone there. The men struck her with a stone, knocking out teeth and drawing blood. They proceeded to attack her with a sharp object, causing her five injuries: one to her chest, three to her back and one to her side. The perpetrators also stole Ludwika’s laptop computer and handbag.
After the attack, Ludwika was taken to a hospital and is now in recovery from her injuries.
ANIT is an organization that works to promote and defend the rights of transgender women through educational programs on human rights and through advocacy work in various fora.
Ludwika has been a crucial ally to Caribe Afirmativo during the organization’s Enterezas II [“strength of character”] program, which investigates gender-based violence and hate crimes against lesbian and bisexual women. She has built networks with lesbian, bisexual and trans women throughout civil society in order to carry out trainings, workshops and community organizing to demand human rights in Nicaragua.
Race & Equality and Caribe Afirmativo insist upon a thorough investigation of this crime, including investigation into the possibility that the crime was motivated by Ludwika and ANIT’s work in favor of human rights for trans women.
Impunity for attacks against trans women leads to further violence; Nicaraguan authorities must inform the community of the investigation’s findings and sanction the perpetrators to prevent such a cycle.