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The implementation of ECtHR decision L vs Lithuania was highlighted at the International Conference on Ensuring the rights of transgender persons.

6 September 2018

41101878 2045658289028090 5345070586370457600 nAt the international conference-round table discussion Ensuring the Rights of Transgender Persons: Finding the Right Balance, the Seimas Ombudsman, Head of the Office, Mr Augustinas Normantas, noted that the state and the society have to reach an agreement concerning the implementation of the decision of the European Court of Human Rights.

The discussion focused on the fact that international standards for the protection of the rights of transgender persons are incredibly high. In 2018, The World Health Organization eliminated transsexuality from the list of mental illnesses in the International Classification of Diseases and included it into the list of conditions related to the sexual health of a person. It also should be noted that the right to sexual identity is increasingly acknowledged in foreign countries.

Highlighting the fact that in Lithuania the question of transsexuality is still controversial and fires discussions in the society, Mr Normantas pointed out that Lithuania has committed itself to respect human rights, assuming international obligations. Moreover, it enshrined principles of respect to the dignity of a person and prohibition of discrimination in the Constitution of Lithuania. Therefore, the failure to enforce the decision of ECtHR makes it harder for these people to exercise the right on recognition of their gender identity.

The judgment of the European Court of Human Rights in the case L. v. Lithuania, which established the violation of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms concerning failure to implement the right of gender-reassignment defined in the Civil Code, has not been observed for more than a decade in Lithuania.

The event, which was attended by Lithuanian and foreign human rights experts, ombudsmen, Lithuanian judges, representatives of non-governmental organisations and the academic community, was aimed at developing a better understanding of the standards of protection of transgender persons. The state responsibilities and necessary guarantees in this regard were also discussed.

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