Taiwan to accept sex-change woman as man

Taipei - Taiwan, under pressure from gender-equality groups, plans to accept a woman who has undergone sex-change surgery as a man even if he doesn't have a constructed penis, a newspaper said Tuesday.

The Health Department made the compromise Monday after protests from gender-equality groups triggered by a recent Interior Ministry decree that said a woman must have a reconstructed penis if she wants the gender on her identification card changed, the China Times reported.

The Interior Ministry decree was based on a 2005 law that said that for a woman to change her gender with the government, she must receive evaluations from two psychiatrists, have her breasts and ovaries removed, have her urinary tract remade and a penis constructed.

Gender-equality groups complained, saying some women undergo sex-change surgery without getting a reconstructed urinary tract and penis because they cannot afford the 1-million-Taiwan-dollar (32,000-US-dollar) fee.

In response to the protests, the Health Department said Monday that it would recommend to the Interior Ministry that a woman should be defined as a man if she has undergone psychiatric evaluations and a sex-change operation, even if she has not received a reconstructed urinary tract and a penis. (dpa)