Advertisement
Saturday, Dec 04, 2021
Outlook.com
Outlook.com

South Korean Military To Appeal Ruling On Transgender Soldier

A local district court ruled this month that the military unlawfully discriminated against the soldier by forcing her out last year for undergoing gender reassignment surgery.

South Korean Military To Appeal Ruling On Transgender Soldier
South Korea's first known transgender soldier | AP
South Korean Military To Appeal Ruling On Transgender Soldier
outlookindia.com
2021-10-21T12:27:05+05:30

 South Korea's military said Thursday it will appeal a landmark court ruling that struck down its decision to discharge the country's first known transgender soldier before she was found dead earlier this year.

A local district court ruled this month that the military unlawfully discriminated against the soldier by forcing her out last year for undergoing gender reassignment surgery.

The Defence Ministry said it respects the verdict but has decided to appeal. A ministry official said it plans to ask the Justice Ministry to approve the filing, as required by law. Local media reported that the ministry was worried about a possible backlash in the military and administrative confusion if it accepts the ruling.

The appeal is expected to draw strong protests from human rights groups, which have been urging the military to accept the verdict and work out measures to guarantee service for sexual minorities.

South Korea prohibits transgender people from joining the military but has no specific laws on what to do with those who have sex change operations during their time in service. When the army discharged Byun Hui-su in January last year, it cited a law provision allowing it to dismiss personnel with physical or mental disabilities if those weren't a result of combat or suffered in the line of duty.

In its Oct 7 ruling, the Daejeon District Court ruled against the discharge, saying that Byun had already informed the army that she had registered her request to change her legal status as a woman with another local court. Her request for a legal gender change was approved less than a month after her discharge.

Byun was found dead at her home in March at age 23. Before her discharge, Byun, a staff sergeant, told reporters that she wanted to serve as a female soldier near the tense border with North Korea.

Public views on gender issues in South Korea have gradually changed in recent years. However, a strong bias against sexual minorities still runs deep. 

Advertisement

Outlook Newsletters

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

Read More from Outlook

Shaheen Bagh, CAA, Farmers’ Protest: Hip-Hop Is The Voice Of Dissent In India

Shaheen Bagh, CAA, Farmers’ Protest: Hip-Hop Is The Voice Of Dissent In India

Young, brash and little-known artistes are using hip-hop as an outlet to speak up and speak out.

World Disability Day: Visually Impaired Girls In Himachal Use Education To Dispel Darkness

World Disability Day: Visually Impaired Girls In Himachal Use Education To Dispel Darkness

Umang Foundation in Himachal Pradesh has helped many blind and visually impaired persons achieve their dreams by giving them access to higher education.

Mayank Notches Maiden 100 Vs NZ – Statistical Highlights

Mayank Notches Maiden 100 Vs NZ – Statistical Highlights

Mayank Agarwal's ton against New Zealand on Friday was his first since his 243 vs Bangladesh in 2019 at Indore.

Kashmir: Ghulam Nabi Azad Emerges As Key Player In J&K With Or Without Congress

Kashmir: Ghulam Nabi Azad Emerges As Key Player In J&K With Or Without Congress

Crowds at Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad's recent rallies show that he will be a key player in elections in Jammu and Kashmir, when they happen.

Advertisement