Local News

 This section provides articles on local in-Europe issues

Albania: House where five transgender people were living set on fire

 On 27 April 2011 five transgender people in Albania were put at risk because the house where they stood was set on fire by unknown persons.

The PINK Embassy - an organization working to protect the rights of LGBT community in Albania - informs on the incident in a press release:The transgender people were housed in an abandoned house in Durres Road, adjacent to the building of the


former Yugoslav Embassy in Tirana. Around 4:30 am, they were being alerted by smoke and flames, which had blocked almost all entry-exit points of the house. In the same house lived a Roma family of seven members five of whom were minors.


Although fortunately there were no casualties, the transgender community believes that the act of vandalism was committed by a group of homophobes, which should have previously identified their location. The police and firemen arrived on the scene immediately to extinguish the fire and give first aid to the victims. However, the Tirana Police Authority at the time of preparation of this statement had not issued any press release about the event.


Hate crimes are severely punished throughout the civilized world and Albania cannot make an exception to this. The event in question shows once again that, while Albania has adopted the Law against Discrimination, the life and dignity of the trans-gender community continues not to be respected and put at risk.


The fact that the Transgender community have not been provided, nor by the Municipality of Tirana or by the Ministry of Labour, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities, with any opportunity for housing, employment and security, indicates that homophobia is rooted in the mentality of governance in Albania. This is unacceptable for us! The life and dignity of every transgender person is equal with that of every Albanian citizen!


Taking into consideration this event, we would like to urge the Municipality of Tirana and the Ministry of Labour, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities, to react against this act, while provide transgender community in the shortest possible way the completion of their minimum rights for security, housing and food. These rights expect an urgent response thus we expect immediate actions by the Albanian public institutions.


Such episodes damage community life in particular and society in general. Human rights are equal for everyone.




Albanian Ombudsman office starts investigation into the police violence against transgender person in Tirana

Albanian Ombudsman office starts investigation into the police violence against transgender person in Tirana

5 September 2011 - The Albanian Ombudsman’s office announced the start of investigations into the latest case of violence used against a member of the transgender community in Albania, Paloma, a couple of weeks ago by members of the State Police.

On 15 August 2011, PINK Embassy / LGBT Pro Albania publicly denounced the brutal violence used against Paloma, in a Park near the Albanian House of Parliament and duly informed the authorities about the situation. While investigating a theft case, the Tirana Police Officers got for questioning a friend of the transgender group, an action which was faced with Paloma’s resistance. This resulted in a then use of disproportionate and violent force by the Police officers against Paloma. On the same day Paloma was accompanied by the Police to the Emergency Health Services of the Tirana Hospital (QSUT) to be checked for internal injuries. Paloma was released later that day. The Police Authority of Tirana never pressed any charges against her.

After the fast and string reaction of PINK Embassy / LGBT PRO Albania the Ombudsman Office gave a positive answer to our request for the start of an immediate investigation into the case for putting in front of legal responsibility all the people in uniform involved in such an act of violence.

PINK Embassy has provided the Ombudsman’s Office all materials that will enable them to properly investigate the case. 

PINK Embassy

German Constitutional Court declares compulsory surgeries unconstitutional

TGEU welcomes decision by German Constitutional Court: other countries ought to ban sterilization requirement as not constitutional  

January 28th 2011

The German Constitutional Court has announced in a press release [1]  today that the requirement to undergo sterilization or gender reconstruction surgery is not constitutional. The decision has immediate effect.The plaintiff, a 62 year old transsexual woman, had acquired the so-called “small solution” with a name change, but not altered the civil status due to the requirement to undergo sterilization surgery. With a still “male” civil status she and her female partner had been denied the right to enter a registered same-sex partnership. If forced to marry, so plaintiff, they are recognizable as a partnership with at least one transsexual spouse – a live free from discrimination made impossible. The First Division of the Federal Constitutional Court has ruled that the standardized conditions for legal gender recognition of transsexuals to enter into a partnership are not compatible with the right to sexual self-determination, physical integrity and privacy. "A reform of the German Gender Recognition Act (Transsexuellengesetz) is more than overdue." says Max Schulze board member of the Berlin-based organization TransInterQueer, " we demand from the Federal Government and the Parliament to show quick and consistent action now." TGEU welcomes the decision by the German Constitutional Court. A majority of countries in Europe have similar requirements violating the human rights of transgender people. The Council of Europe has already indicated that this is a matter of concern. Thus, the Committee of Ministers had stated that ‘prior requirements, including changes of a physical nature, for legal recognition of a gender reassignment, should be regularly reviewed in order to remove abusive requirements.’[2]  In line with previous decisions from the German Constitutional Court on the German Transsexual Law and in combination with similar verdicts of the Austrian High Administrative Court TGEU is positive that this will send a strong signal to other countries to review their gender recognition legislation. “The margin of appreciation for requirements for gender recognition, as granted by the European Court of Human Rights, has its limits. The decision of the German court states clearly that human rights of transgender persons are jeopardized with a legal requirement for sterility or compulsory sex reassignment surgery, still practiced in many countries in Europe. When the Committee of Ministers recommendation will be up for review in two years, we want to see Germany and many other countries to have their legislation in line with international human rights law.” says Richard Köhler, co-chair of Transgender Europe.  




/* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Normale Tabelle"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-priority:99; mso-style-qformat:yes; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0cm 5.4pt 0cm 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0cm; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:10.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman","serif"; mso-fareast-font-family:"Times New Roman";} [1] Press Release of the German Constitutional Court on BvR 3295/07

[2] Council of Ministers Recommendation Rec(2010)5 on measures to combat discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation or gender identity.





Greece is lying about gender identity legislation. Greece's political fraud.

We wish to strongly denounce the Greek Representatives to the UN for spreading unabashed lies and for political fraud, because the legislation in Greece makes absolutely no provision for discrimination on the grounds of gender identity.

Greek Transgendered Support Association Press Release


The Greek Transgendered Support Association (TGSA) with this press release denounces the Greek delegation to the United Nations, which, by means of its permanent representative to the UN, ambassador Giorgos Kaklikis reported that:

“As about discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity, Greece has strong anti-discrimination legislation, which prohibits, among others, discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. In addition to that, the Greek government, is presently investigating the subject of recognition of same sex couples. I would like to emphasize that we fully support your efforts in this field and we urge you to continue the work that you do in that direction”. 

These, among others, where the words of the Greek ambassador to the UN, Mr Kaklikis in the 19th Assembly of the Human Rights Council, addressing the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (video of the ambassador's speech can be found in the following url: http://www.unmultimedia.org/tv/webcast/2012/03/greece-item-2-13th-meeting-19th-session-human-rights-council.html). 

We wish to strongly denounce the Greek Representatives to the UN for spreading unabashed lies and for political fraud, because the legislation in Greece makes absolutely no provision for discrimination on the grounds of gender identity.

We wish to denounce the state for its stance in the matter of gender identity and anti-discrimination legislation. Despite the continuous encouragement of the Greek Transgendered Support Association and other local organizations, despite the continuous encouragement of the European Commissioner for Human Rights of the Council of Europe, for the inclusion of gender identity in anti-discrimination legislation, and also the legislation against the dissemination of hate speech and hate crime, the Greek state has taken absolutely no steps towards that direction.

Instead, the Greek state through its Representative in the United Nations is lying in a provocative manner, commits political fraud against its international partners and in essence is mocking its citizens.

The Greek Transgendered Support Association (TGSA) will continue with all its resources the interventions towards all the Parliamentary Parties and bodies in Greece but also all international organizations, for the inclusion of gender identity in the anti-discrimination legislation but also the legislation against the dissemination of hate speech and hate crimes, as well as towards the recognition of gender identity.





Ireland welcomes Equality Tribunal Decision on Transgender Case

Transgender Equality Network Ireland (TENI) welcomes the Equality Tribunal’s decision in the Louise Hannon case to extend protections to transgender people.

TENI Chairperson, Martine Cuypers said: “This is a significant step for transgender equality in Ireland. An important precedent has been set in recognising the inclusion of transgender people under the gender ground of equality legislation.

“We also congratulate Louise Hannon on winning this landmark case following her four-year legal battle. Ms. Hannon’s case highlights that transgender people regularly experience discrimination in the workplace as well as challenges in accessing and retaining employment.

“TENI urgently calls on the government to fulfil its commitment to extend the protections of the equality legislation to transgender people through the explicit inclusion of ‘Gender Identity and Gender Expression’ as protections under the gender ground,” she said.

Gender Recognition Legislation urgently required


TENI urges the government to introduce comprehensive Gender Recognition Legislation for Ireland. Gender Recognition Legislation is promised in the Programme for Government and a working group is due to provide recommendations to the Minister for Social Protection, Joan Burton shortly.

“This case highlights the importance of a proper legislative framework for gender recognition and we urge Minister Burton to move forward with drafting and enacting this legislation as quickly as possible,” Ms. Cuypers added.

TENI was established in 2005 and represents Ireland’s transgender community. TENI provides support services for transgender people across the country. At present TENI facilitates six support groups across the country in Cavan, Cork, Dublin, Galway, Limerick and Waterford. A further service is opening in Sligo shortly. 300 people accessed TENI’s support services in 2010.

Further Information

Martine Cuypers, Chairperson, TENI: (01) 873 3575 / (087) 135 9816.  

Irish Government Gender Recognition Advisory Group Report – A Missed Opportunity

Irish Government Gender Recognition Advisory Group Report – A Missed Opportunity

TGEU Press Release | 15th July 2011

Today, Ireland’s Minister for Social Protection, Joan Burton, TD launched the report of the Gender Recognition Advisory Group (GRAG), an interdepartmental committee established to advise the Minister on recommendations for proposed gender recognition legislation.
While the report’s long-awaited publication is to be welcomed, TGEU has grave concerns that the proposals have not adopted the Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights’ recommendations regarding legal gender recognition. The GRAG recommendations are not reflective of a human rights-based approach or the lived experience of many trans people.
Key areas of concern include:
Recommendation that a trans person in an existing valid marriage or civil partnership must obtain a divorce or dissolution of the partnership in order to have their gender legally recognised. This requirement contradicts the Irish State’s constitutional obligation to protect marriage, and by requiring divorce, creates further obstacles to many couples in Ireland who wish to remain together. This morning, GRAG Chairperson Oliver Ryan admitted that the proposal left couples in “a practically impossible position”.
Requirement that a trans person must live in their preferred gender for a minimum of 2 years (Real Life Test) without legal recognition or protection in order to obtain recognition. This requirement would cause unnecessary distress and anxiety for many trans people.
Medical Criteria:
Requirement of a diagnosis of Gender Identity Disorder in addition to relevant supporting medical evidence, or
Medical evidence that the applicant has undergone gender reassignment surgery, or
Evidence of the recognition of changed gender in another jurisdiction. The proposed medical criteria are problematic as they will exclude many trans people and discourage many more from seeking legal recognition.
Although Minister Burton reaffirmed her commitment to ensure ongoing engagement and dialogue on the proposed legislation, many trans people in Ireland expressed frustration and anger with the recommendations contained in the GRAG report. Cat McIlroy, Steering Committee member of TGEU, who was present at the launch, stated “Ireland has the opportunity to lead Europe in enacting progressive gender recognition legislation, today it seems that this opportunity has been missed”.
The GRAG Report can be accessed at:
For further information, please contact: Cat McIlroy + 353 87 766 1770



Italian court says sterilisation is not mandatory for gender reassignment

italy map

Italian court says sterilisation is not mandatory for gender reassignment

Wed, 2011-07-06 11:16 by Alexander Schuster
Rome, 6 July 2011 – The Court of first instance of Rome decided to reaffirm a, isolated precedent of 1997 and stated that sterilisation is not to be understood as a mandatory requirement for gender reassignment. This decision will hopefully change the prevailing interpretation of the law in the country.
The Tribunal of Rome decided on 11 March 2011 [judgement on EJ database] to grant gender reassignment in a case where the applicant eventually decided not to undergo gender reassignment surgery and referred to a previous decision of 1997 by the same court.
A judicial procedure for reassignment is required by the 1982 law. The law is widely constructed as requiring sterilisation. The decision is of the greatest importance as it comes from a court that is perhaps the one dealing with the highest number of applications for gender reassignment in Italy. Rome hosts the SAIFIP, a medical centre specialized in gender identity issues and a leading institution in Italy.
The decision is definitive and cannot be appealed.
The Equal Jus Project has selected this leading decision for translation into English. It will be published shortly online.



This article was taken from www.equal-jus.eu


The Commissioner for Protection against Discrimination recommends to the Albanian Parliamentarian to avoid discriminatory language and statements against the LGBT community in Albania.


In a landmark case the Commissioner against Discrimination in Albania has asked a member of the Parliament to avoid discriminatory language and statements against the LGBT community.
The complaint was brought forward by PINK Embassy/LGBT Pro Albania and Alliance against Discrimination to the Commissioner for protection against Discrimination. The lately reacted with a letter of recommendation sent to Mr. Tritan Shehu, Member of Albanian Parliament and vice-chairman of the Commission for Labor, Social Issues and Health.
On December 2010, PINK Embassy/LGBT Pro Albania filed a complaint to the Commissioner against Discrimination, whereupon it asked measures to be taken towards Mr. Tritan Shehu, who at a hearing session of the Commission for Labor, Social Issues and Health at the Parliament during the International Day Against HIV/AIDS declared that homosexuality is a disease and it should be treated with hormones.
The same Commission did not take into consideration the official request of PINK Embassy/LGBT Pro Albania to organise a hearing session for the LGBT people living with HIV/AIDS, but contrary to that it conducting a meeting in secret and without notifying any of the organisations who requested it.
After our complaint, the Commissioner for Protection against Discrimination, took into consideration the case and followed the necessary procedures. On September 30th 2011 the Office of the Commissioner sent a Recommendation Letter to Mr. Tritan Shehu recommending him with the following:
-          Mr. Shehu should avoid discriminatory remarks in the future, which cause an atmosphere of tension and unfriendliness towards the LGBT community in Albania . (In this regard we inform Mr. Shehu that homosexuality has been excluded from the International Classification of Diseases and should not be treated as such.)
-          Granting all possible guaranties so that the thoughts, opinions and remarks of the LGBT community are heard, evaluated and taken into consideration, when they are directly involved on specific topics, in order to help the community to enjoy fully its rights and freedoms.
PINK Embassy/LGBT Pro Albania wants to thank the institution of the Commissioner for Protection against Discrimination for the collaboration and the positive conclusion on this specific case while it encourages the Commissioner to continue with its work for protection of citizens against any forms of discrimination.
Tirana / Albania


Portugal adopts Trans law - 8 days for Legal Gender Recognition

Congratulations, Portugal! It is a Trans law!

After the president had vetoed the parliament's decision las year, he now signed the law coming into force on March 15th. Thus, Portugal has finally a law regulating the legal gender recognition. It is filling a legal gap human rights activists have been pointing out for a long time. With the new law, the preferred gender can be obtained using a standardized administrative procedure within 8 days. Besides the application a certificate from a medical multi-disciplinary team is necessary to fullfil the pre-conditions. The procedure is only open to individuals of Portuguese nationality and above 18 years of age.

TGEU welcomes this legislative step as it ends a long period of legal uncertainty for trans people in Portugal. Portugal joins also the progessive club of Spain and the Uk, the only countries in the European Union, where sterilisation is not mandatory in legal gender recognition legislation. It sends also an important signal to other states in Europe to reconsider  pre-conditions and remove abusive elements ub gender recognition legislation as recommended by the Council of Ministers in 2010.

"The right to documents corresponding to the identity of a person is a basic citizen right. We congratulate ILGA Portugal and other human rights activists in Portugal to this success." says Richard Köhler, Co-chair of Transgender Europe.

With regard to the economic crisis, those suffering diametral from discrimination and social exclusionneed special  attention.

Köhler comments further "We are confident that this law improves the lifes of trans people in Portugal significantly. After clarifying this aspects, other questions need to be tackled as well. Access to adequate health care and the job market as well as guaranteeing a life free from discrimination now need to be prioritized for both trans citizens and residents of Portugal."

Portugal had gained sad prominence when Gisberta was brutally murdered in 2006 and only upon local and international pressure the purpetrators were brought to justice.

The legislative process was initiated by Thomas Hammarberg, Council of Europe Human Rights Commissioner, who had visited Portugal earlier in 2010.

The text of the law can be found here: http://dre.pt/pdf1sdip/2011/03/05200/0145001451.pdf



Study on the situation of trans people at the job market in the Netherlands and Flanders

Transgender at Work TRANSGENDERS EN WERK Een onderzoek naar de arbeidssituatie van transgenders in Nederland en Vlaanderen Utrecht, mei 2010 Auteur: Paul Vennix www.rutgersnissogroep.nl



In this study the employment situation of Dutch and Flemish transgender employees has been mapped out and the circumstances influencing their situation. Unemployed transgenders have also participated in this study, and have given insight into the problems they experience with being transgenders when trying to find work. Participants of this survey have mainly been approached through the websites of transgender interest groups in the Netherlands and Flanders. We put a comprehensive questionnaire on the Internet, which was answered by 386 transgenders. The transgenders who responded are not representative for the entire transgender population. The survey distinguishes between MtFs (transgender females born male) and FtMs (transgender males born female). A further distinction is made between non-ops (transgenders who do not proceed with Sex Reassignment Surgery (SRS)), pre-ops (those who have applied for SRS) and post-ops (those who have had surgery). FtMs are underrepresented in this study. Consequently, certain aspects of the employment situation of FtM non-ops, pre-ops and post-ops were impossible to compare. Moreover, too few unemployed FtMs participated in the survey to describe their circumstances. Unemployed MtFs (but very likely FtMs as well) are often rejected when applying for a job because of their transgender background, and face great difficulties finding jobs in which their transgender background is accepted. Reintegration bureaus and departments are rarely well-adjusted to the personal situation of unemployed transgenders. Having a transgender background is a career barrier both for the unemployed and the employed. Being unable to be oneself, discrimination and lack of acceptance from colleagues play important roles. Consequently, transgenders are underrepresented in important positions. Transgenders hardly dare come out at work. This goes especially for non-ops, since they do not know whether their managers are going to support their coming out.7 They fear being bullied by their colleagues. Eventually, in the event of having chosen for SRS (pre-ops), coming out is inevitable. Even then a number of pre-ops postpones their coming out till the very limit. However, pre-ops, who admit to wanting Sex Reassignment Surgery, are usually supported by their management. Generally, a majority of their colleagues accept their decision to have surgery. In spite of all this, as the National Enquiry into Employment Circumstances 20068 shows, transgenders (non-ops, pre-ops and post-ops) are confronted with annoying behaviour of colleagues much more often than others. MtFs are even more troubled by this than FtMs. Gender crossing expressions by men (make-up, women’s clothes, girl’s names etcetera) are hardly ever accepted at work, though women are also expected to conform to the current gender rules. This renders it impossible for transgenders to show themselves at work as they really are. Male colleagues’ attitudes are more deprecative towards transgenders than those of female colleagues. Therefore, FtM pre-ops have more difficulty in being accepted as men into the men’s world at work. MtF are more easily admitted into the women’s community Few transgenders fit into the box ‘male’ or ‘female’. Gender dichotomy and organisational (and cultural) policies often lead to mental problems, because people can not sufficiently be themselves. MtFs often find themselves in male dominated jobs because of a ‘male’ career choice, in which they do not feel comfortable. This also leads to psychological problems. Diversity management contributes to a large degree to a positive job experience and a good workrelation with colleagues and superiors. Diversity management promotes transgenders’ open attitude at work. In order to improve transgenders’ position (at work) policies specifically directed to their employment situation are needed, as well as a general organisation policy. The Yogyakarta-principles9 are an important guideline in this. Additionally, the memorandum on the Emancipation policy of Lesbians and Gays 2008-201110 needs to be readjusted, since it hardly pays any attention to transgenders. The male-female dichotomy needs to be broken apart not only in legislation and abolition of sex registration, but by granting partial sex reassignment surgery in the Netherlands in accordance with international guidelines11. Simultaneously, transgenders’s image needs to be improved by means of education and information (with special focus on gender diversity). Transgenders as a target group need explicitly to come under the Equal Rights Act. Equality and antidiscrimination policy will only then be directed to transgenders as well. Moreover, both in diversity management and in the Collective Labour Agreements special attention should be paid to transgenders. Labour reintegration offices and labour advice bureaus should be better equipped (and have more know-how) to be of service to transgenders.

Towards simplified regulations in France


Bill submitted by French socialist MPs: towards a simplified gender recognition 

Socialist MP Michèle Delaunay and the whole socialist parliamentary group submitted on December 22nd 2011 a bill that aims at simplifying legal gender recognition for transgender citizens. It concludes three years long endeavors of a parliamentary working group lead by Michèle Delaunay with the expertise of HES activists (Homosexualités & Socialisme) This bill has following objectives : - to  equalize court judgment outputs about legal gender change in civil status, stopping the obligation to prove that the undergone physical transformation is irreversible. The Ministry of Justice issued a circular letter on May 14th 2010 towards prosecuting attorneys, requesting to stop demands of medical examinations. It didn't change judge behaviors still seeking the irreversible criteria. - to simplify the legal proceeding enabling gender change in civil status, aiming at, according Michèle Delaunay's own words,  cancelling its traumatic and barbarian nature. The proposed proceeding recognizes the individual’s  preferred gender identity, without any prior obligation to undergo sterilisation or other medical procedures such as sex reassignment surgery and hormonal therapy, and therefore comply with the resolution 1728 ( article 16.11.2) voted on April 29th 2010 by the Parliament Assembly of Council of Europe. The proceeding give back full dignity to transgender persons. Once for all gender change in civil status and transgender health are de-correlated.  The bill has been translated in English and can be found here. Yet,  transgender health and related standards of care are still an open issue in France, left abandoned by current government. HES still demands that a comprehensive reform including standards of care, care structure, and insurance coverage shall comply with the principle of free choice of  its own practitioner, and with a true respect of transgender needs diversity. This submitted bill will not be proposed for a vote since current parliamentary political orientation can't allow it. French presidential election is coming soon in early 2012 and makes hope for a new political distribution in the Parliament two months later. This bill will be the only reference in matter of gender change in civil status. HES and LGBT NGOs will make sure that candidates' promise towards transgender rights takes benefit from this submitted bill and comes true as soon as possible . *** Contacts : Gilles Bon-Maury, président d'HES, gilles.bon-maury@hes-france.org, tél. +33 6 61 53 19 39 ; Laura Leprince, déléguée chargée des questions d'identité de genre, laura.leprince@hes-france.org, tél. +33 6 85 88 58 11. http://www.hes-france.org/

Trans Woman Murdered in Istanbul

Didem - source:www.radikal.com.tr

Transphobic murder in Istanbul

"I thought that she was a woman, but she was a travesti. After learning this, I killed her."

With great sadness and anger have we learned that yet another trans woman has been killed in Turkey on 31st of July 2011. This is the info received today from TGEU member organisation Pembe Hayat:

dear friends, as regards to the murder of didem, today we have more information. the murderer is a 26 years old man, who met with didem on facebook and agreed to have sex by paying her - didem is a sex worker. interestingly, the murderer is a fugitive soldier, named o.f.k. he was caught by the police just after the murder after the high level of noise coming from the victim. he confessed to the police, "i thought that she was a woman, but she was a travesti. after learning this, i killed her." tomorrow, we will have a silent protest in front of the apartment of didem together with the trans community in istanbul at around 18.00 p.m. in findikzade district of istanbul. here is the link, where you can find the video taken just after the murder, where you can see the murderer and the trans friends of didem. http://www.oynat.tv/facebookta-tanistigi-travestiyi-oldurdu


Our thoughts go out to Didem's close ones and the Trans and sex worker communities in Turkey.

These transphobic murders and attacks have to stop! Impunity for transphobic murders and attacks needs to be ended now!  

Transgender Hearing in the Danish Parliament

Monday 14th March 2011 was a day to remember for Danish trans activism. 

For the first time ever a hearing was held in Christiansborg with the focus on healthcare, social policy and human rights for transgender people.

The day was in every respect a huge success. There were a number of speeches that highlighted the situation. Among those participating, Karin Astrup and Maria Sundin spoke on the dilemma whether transsexual people are sick versus the requirement to have Sex Reassignment Surgeries paid by public funds.

Pia Nielsen spoke about the TVT project and the Hammarberg report. Denmark is among the countries in Europe that hardly complies with Mr. Hammarberg’s recommendations for Human Rights for transgender people

100 people participated and consisted of politicians, specialist from various authorities and transgender people.

It was notable that a number of various media also participated - Danish Television (DR), Ritzaus Bureau, Berlingske Tidende (one of the largest newspapers in Denmark), Modkraft (LGBT newspaper) and other journalists.

The main organiser of the hearing, Irene Haffner, was interviewed by the main TV channel in Denmark in Prime Time and I was myself interviewed by 2 radio channels

That has led to a number of articles in various newspapers and on some websites. One is the following (in Danish):


Pia Nielsen

Transphobic Police violence in Tirana, Albania

Logo Pink Embassy

Call for urgent investigation on the latest case of extreme violence used by the police against a transgender woman in Tirana


(for immediate distribution)
 by Pink Embassy
Call for urgent investigation on the latest case of extreme violence used by the police against a transgender woman in Tirana
Tirana, August 15, 2011
PINK Embassy/LGBT Pro Albania, an organisation that works for the protection of LGBT community in Albania, wishes to express its deep concerns for the latest case of extreme violence used against a member of the transgender community in Tirana, Albania.
On August 14, 2011 around 16:00 members of the State Police, accompanied by a private citizen, where investigating the theft of a necklace at the park near the Albanian Parliament. Amongst the people they were interviewing for the case was also a young man, who is friends with the transgender group, which lives by this park. When the police tried to detain the young man, they faced resistance by one of the transgender people called Paloma.
The reaction of the Police towards Paloma was extremely violent, crossing all boundaries of its lawful use. A group of six police officers, one of them a woman, used totally unjustified violence which based on international acts ratified by Albania, could be classified as degrading punishment and torture.
Afterwards, Paloma was taken in custody at the Tirana Police Authority, where violence against her continued until she was totally covered in blood and had fainted. To avoid any bruises on the head and face, she was forced to wear a helmet, while kicking and punching continued all over her body. PINK Embassy / LGBT PRO Albania are in possession of pictures that show scars and bruises on her body. The Police took Paloma at Mother Teresa National Hospital (QSUT), where she received immediate aid and was then taken back to the police headquarters of Tirana.
Throughout the entire detention, Paloma was not offered any legal assistance and was asked to sign documents without her consent. Paloma cannot read or write.
PINK Embassy calls on the Ministry of Interior and Albanian People’s Advocate to start an immediate investigation on the case and to bring to justice all the people in uniform who were involved in the torturing for endless hours a transgender person, putting her life in absolute danger.
For years, the transgender community in Albania has suffered from marginalization and social exclusion. The community lacks support from Tirana Municipality and central government institutions. It is not the first time that PINK Embassy/LGBT Pro Albania publicly denounces the violence and maltreatment of transgender people in Tirana by the Police. Even though during the last months there has been an improvement in the way transgender people were being treated by the Police, the latest case shows that they further need to improve their professionalism and work behavior.



Urkaine: homophobic bill comes forward

Ukrainian Parliament adopts homo- and transphobic law in 1st reading

Ukrainian LGBT activist attacked (summer 2012) Source:http://theseattlelesbian.com

Ukraine: homo- and transphobic law underway


The Ukrainian Parliament has adopted on 2nd Oct in 1st reading legal proposal bill # 8711. Once adopted the law  prohibits any public dissemination of information relating to sexual orientation and gender identity. This is a serious infringement on the right to information and renders the work of civil society organizations in these areas illegal.

Transgender Euroep - TGEU is very concerned about these developments and has asked prime Minsiter Azarov, President Yanukovich and Minister for Foreign Affairs Gryshchenko to stop this dangerous development that is playing with populist sentiments.

Read the letter TGEU sent to Prime Minister Azarov here.

Read more about the information on the legal proposal on the website of TGEU member organisation NGO "Insight".

sorry, no surgeries available. Malta continous breach of human rights

Malta picture Valetta -City from Gentlemen for Gentlemen

health care not a gentleman's issue?

source: océan leroy

No surgeries available.

Malta continues to breach Human Rights of transgender people




Health Minister says there are no surgery facilities or health care coverage in the country. This is depsite the fact tha Maltese legislation requires sterility and heavy invasive surgery in order to change gender markers.
Malta is in constant breach of human rights of trans people. The Maltese Health Minister Joseph Cassar confirmed on a parliamentary question that facilities for gender confirming surgeries are not available in Malta. He did not comment on the question whether treatment (abroad) would be included in public health care schemes.
The European Court of Human Rights has ruled that countries have the positive obligation to enable gender reassignment surgeries (L v Lithuania) and to include trans health care in their insurance plans (Kück v Germany).

 “The case law of the European Court of Human Rights clearly requires states not only to provide for the possibility to undergo surgery leading to full gender-reassignment, but also that insurance plans should cover ‘‘medically necessary’’ treatment in general, which gender reassignment surgery is part of.” says the Commissioner for Human Rights in his issue paperHuman Rights and Gender identity”.

Malta needs to pro-actively look into the issues transgender people are facing such as lack of legal gender recognition, access to health care, ability to marry.
Just for changing the name, Malta requires its transgender citizens to psychotherapeutic treatment, evaluation by a qualified mental health professional, real life test, confirmation of outer appearance, hormonal treatment, sex reassignment surgery (SRS), permanent infertility. All of these requirements are in breach of the Yogyakarta principles. The Committee of Ministers stated that prior requirements, including changes of a physical nature, should be regularly reviewed for legal recognition of a gender reassignment, in order to remove abusive requirements. A legislative project to introduce the Gender Identity Bill as proposed by MP Evarista Bartolo and MGRM, the Malta LGBT Organisation, is more than over-due.
Malta is also breaching ECHR case-law regarding the right to marry as a pending case shows. A transsexual woman is currently denied marriage of either sex as the Public Registrar has successfully argued in Court that as a result of gender reassignment, she is neither fully a woman nor a man in spite of existing ECtHR case-law. The case is not in front of the Maltese Constitutional Court.
TGEU urges Malta to end its head-in-the-sand-policies and recognize its responsibility to enable its transgender citizens and residents a life in dignity free from discrimination. Malta is no island -it needs to implement quickly the rulings of the European Court of Human Rights just as any other member state of the Council of Europe, too. This means first of all adopting a new gender recognition legislation and respect the right to marry and coverage of costs for gender reassignment treatment.


Read more on the situation of trans people in Malta here.