Vietnam's lawmakers support gender reassignment, call it basic human right

By Truong Son, Thanh Nien News

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 Trans women apply for jobs at a job fair in Ho Chi Minh City. Photo: Nhu Lich
Many members of the National Assembly's legal committee on Tuesday urged the government to recognize gender reassignment as a human right.
The committee expressed their view on the issue two months after it criticized the government for contradicting itself in its draft amendments to the Civil Code.
In the bill, the government refuses to recognize the right, but allows people who "have undergone sex reassignment surgery" to have their identifications changed accordingly.
Speaking at the latest meeting, Phan Trung Ly, chairman of of the committee, said the government needs to give "careful considerations" to its recommendation.
The government could violate basic human rights recognized in the 2013 Constitution if it refused to legalize gender reassignment, he added. 
Gender reassignment is related to one's identity, but it also involves many aspects like legal frameworks for health care rights and marriage, he said.
An official with the Ministry of Health last week told the press that nearly 600 Vietnamese people who had sex reassignment surgery have been seeking to change their name and gender identification in birth certificates. 
Vietnam's current laws only allow intersex people or those with incomplete sex organs to have sex reassignment.

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