A story of cruelty that led to the death of an intersex person in Kenya…
By Joseph Odero
Muhadh Ishmael in his hospital bed. (Photo by Joseph Odero)
Muhadh Ishmael, age 17, was born with a body that combined male and female features — both men’s and women’s genitalia and, after he reached puberty, enlarged breasts.
That intersex body caused much trouble in his family, who did not accept his desire to be considered a man.
His family, who live in rural Malindi, about 110 kilometers north of Mombasa, decided early this month that they had had enough of his stubbornness. He was seized by four unknown men whom his uncle introduced to him as cousins. They drove him to a remote location, stripped him and drugged him. Then they cut off his penis.
He was abandoned in Arabuko Sokoke Forest, south of Malindi, where a passing motorist found him and took him to Malindi District Hospital.
He received treatment for his injuries, but kept…
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