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Russian Court Orders Local Authorities to Recognize Transsexual’s New Gender

The court ordered the local authorities to change the plaintiff's gender information in the civil registry.

A Chelyabinsk court has ruled in favor of a transsexual who took the local civil registry office to court over its refusal to recognize his newly acquired gender, Rossiiskaya Gazeta reported Thursday.

The plaintiff was born a female, but underwent a sex-change operation in March to become a man.

Still, the office refused to formally reflect his new gender in the civil registry, insisting that he present "medical proof."

The plaintiff in turn presented the court with medical documentation, evidencing the irreversibility of his new anatomy, the newspaper reported, citing the court's press office.

In addition to evidence that he had undergone plastic and reconstructive surgery in order to swap genders, the plaintiff submitted to the court medical certificates proving that he had been diagnosed with "transsexualism."

The court then ordered the local authorities to change the plaintiff's information in the civil registry. The new data will feature the plaintiff's male gender, and change his legal name to one better suited to a man.

The decision has not yet taken effect, and may be appealed by the registry office.

The unusual court hearing cast light on an issue that has until recently remained largely in the dark. "Russia still has no format or procedure in place for providing documents to confirm a change of gender," Tatyana Kapkova, a spokesperson for the court, was cited by Rossiiskaya Gazeta as saying on Thursday.

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