- The Washington Times - Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Hungary passed a law Tuesday that prevents people from changing the sex on their birth certificates.

In a 134-56 vote, the Parliament voted to define gender on state identity documents as the “sex at birth” on the registered birth certificate.

Transgender groups cried foul and claimed the law pushed the country back by a thousand years by preventing people from receiving official support for changing their gender identity.

“This decision pushes Hungary back towards the dark ages and tramples the rights of transgender and intersex people. It will not only expose them to further discrimination but will also deepen an already intolerant and hostile environment faced by the LGBTI community,” Amnesty International researcher Krisztina Tamas-Saroy said in a statement.

Hungarian government officials denied that the law is in any way discriminatory or prevents people from expressing whatever gender identity they may wish to present.

In an emailed statement to CNN, the government of right-populist Viktor Orban noted that the law “does not affect men’s and women’s right to freely experience and exercise their identities as they wish.”

“In no way does the relevant section of the bill that some people criticize prevent any person from exercising their fundamental rights arising from their human dignity or from living according their identity, just as the state cannot normatively instruct anybody what to think,” the statement said.

The right-populist government of Mr. Orban, who often has been compared with President Trump, has been criticized by liberal activists and European Union officials for its path in rejecting, and even acting contrary to, their prescriptions on such matters as immigration, national sovereignty and religious freedom.

Amnesty International and other trans-rights groups asked that the Hungarian Constitutional Court review the law.

“It is critical for Hungary’s Commissioner for Fundamental Rights to act urgently and request that the Constitutional Court review and swiftly annuls the appalling provisions of this law,” Ms. Tamas-Saroy wrote.

• Victor Morton can be reached at vmorton@washingtontimes.com.

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