Putin signs law that prohibits changing sex medically and in official documents

Russian President Vladimir Putin signed the law banning sex change both for medical treatment and on identity documents, a decision that Parliament viewed as a measure to protect children and adults from “degeneracy” but has sparked alarm in the transgender community.

The law was unanimously adopted on July 14 by the deputies of the Lower House and five days later by the Senate.

In this way, in Russia, any medical intervention, both surgical and through the use of drugs, for sex change is prohibited.

The Vice Minister of Health, Oleg Salagái, indicated last June that in 2022 there were 996 requests for sex change in the country.

Medical interventions related to the treatment of congenital anomalies, genetic and endocrine diseases associated with impaired formation of the genital organs in boys will only be allowed after the decision of an expert commission.

The adoption of children to people who have already changed their sex will also be prohibited. Nor can they be their guardians or trustees.

Likewise, the legislation establishes the annulment of marriage if one of the spouses undergoes a sex reassignment.

The 2020 constitutional reform introduced into Russia the concept that marriage is a union between a man and a woman.

Even before Putin signed the law, the Russian Justice annulled the first marriage after one of the couple submitted a request to change their sex on personal documents, an option allowed until recently.

The law now prohibits changing the gender on official documents.

Between 2018 and last year, more than 2,700 Russians changed their sex on their documents, leading to almost 200 marriages.

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Russian transsexuals not only now fear further repression, but also for many the only way out is now exile.

“As Russia’s first transgender politician I can say that this law is not only discriminatory, rather, it prohibits the very existence of trans people in Russia. It is a genocide against transsexuals,” Yulia Alióshina, candidate for governor for the Siberian region of Altai, told EFE in June after the first reading of the legislation.

Maxim, a transsexual who works with the T Center, the main organization to help trans people in Russia, already has “plans to emigrate to Spain.” “Russia is rapidly degrading. Those who were planning to have surgery will have to do the same,” he said.

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