By Lydia Lewis and Finn Hogan (on NewsHub)…
Eliana Rubashkyn has just become one of New Zealand’s newest citizens, after a six-year journey fraught with harassment, prejudice and violence.
A Jewish refugee from Colombia, the 29 year-old came to New Zealand after being persecuted and assaulted, first in Colombia and then in Hong Kong.
Ms Rubashkyn is intersex; she was born with extra sex chromosomes and has both male and female physical traits.
Her parents chose to raise her as a boy, but she identified as female, and her differences made her the target of bullying, discrimination and hate crimes.
She fled Colombia after being stabbed, planning to study in Asia.
However, as she had undergone hormone treatments, she was so unrecognizable that authorities in Hong Kong didn’t believe she was the person in her ID photo.
With her passport confiscated, she was sent to live in a shipping container in a makeshift shelter on the outskirts of Hong Kong.
While there, Ms Rubashkyn was harassed and assaulted for being intersex, culminating in a vicious gang rape that put her in hospital.