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Lithuania – proposal to prohibit gender reassignment surgery

Written declaration No. 493 | Doc. 12753 | 05 October 2011

Ms Anette TRETTEBERGSTUEN, Norway, SOC ; Ms Karin ANDERSEN, Norway, UEL ; Mr Mörður ÁRNASON, Iceland, SOC ; Ms Lise CHRISTOFFERSEN, Norway, SOC ; Mr Michael CONNARTY, United Kingdom, SOC ; Mr Paul FLYNN, United Kingdom, SOC ; Ms Sylvi GRAHAM, Norway, EPP/CD ; Ms Francine JOHN-CALAME, Switzerland, SOC ; Ms Athina KYRIAKIDOU, Cyprus, SOC ; Mr Dirk Van der MAELEN, Belgium, SOC ; Mr Saša MAGAZINOVIĆ, Bosnia and Herzegovina, SOC ; Mr Philippe MAHOUX, Belgium, SOC ; Ms Liliane MAURY PASQUIER, Switzerland, SOC ; Ms Sandra OSBORNE, United Kingdom, SOC ; Mr Geir POLLESTAD, Norway, ALDE ; Mr Indrek SAAR, Estonia, SOC ; Mr Fidias SARIKAS, Cyprus, SOC ; Mr Stefan SCHENNACH, Austria, SOC ; Ms Doris STUMP, Switzerland, SOC ; Mr Boško TOMIĆ, Bosnia and Herzegovina, SOC ; Ms Gisela WURM, Austria, SOC

The current session of the Lithuanian Parliament is to consider a proposal to ban gender reassignment surgery.

The bill put forward by Antanas Matulas MP, Chairman of the Parliament's Committee on Health Affairs, would prohibit doctors and surgeons from performing gender reassignment operations.

The case-law of the European Court of Human Rights considers the right to sexual self-determination as one of the aspects of the right to respect for one’s private life guaranteed by Article 8 of the Convention and requires Contracting States to provide for the possibility to undergo surgery leading to full gender-reassignment.

Moreover, Lithuania, in agreeing the Committee of Ministers Recommendation on combating discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation or gender identity, accepted its obligations with regard to these principles.

This proposal is an egregious attack on the fundamental rights of a highly vulnerable minority, who are in any event at risk of violence and discrimination on a regular basis.

We call upon the Lithuanian government and members of Lithuania's delegation to the Assembly to work to ensure rejection of this proposal.