A report issued by the State Department Thursday repeatedly refers to sex reassignment surgery in Iran as “gender-confirmation surgery.”
Speaking at the release of the State Department’s annual human rights report, Secretary of State John Kerry said of the designation that “There is nothing sanctimonious in this,” emphasizing the need for “humility” in the face of the U.S.’ own racial inequality. The State Department did not respond to a request for clarification by The Daily Caller News Foundation.
Iran has a well-documented record of coercing gay and lesbian people into having the gender reassignment surgery, that is, disrupting rather than “confirming” the gender identity of hundreds per year. Since homosexuality can be punishable by death in Iran, known homosexual men tend to accept the government-subsidized surgery to become women, and vice versa. (RELATED: World’s Most Infamous Hookup App Catches On In Islamist Iran)
The State Department’s new report covers the state of human rights in every country in the world. The chapter on Iran is some 16,000 words long, documenting restrictions such as lack of freedom for religious and political expression; unlawful detention, torture and killing; and “discrimination and violence against women, ethnic and religious minorities.”
Section 6 is labeled “Discrimination, Societal Abuses, and Trafficking in Persons,” and includes a sub-section on the condition of LGBT people. That section states that Iranian law “defines transgender persons as mentally ill,” and that Iran therefore loans candidates for surgery up to $2,030 to undergo the operation.
By referring to the surgeries as “gender confirmation,” rather than the much more widespread and morally neutral “sex reassignment surgery,” the State Department seems to be siding with the Iranian government’s false “cure” for homosexuality. (RELATED: You Can’t Drink Legally In Iran, But The Government Will Still Send You To Rehab)
A 2014 report by the BBC profiled gay and lesbian people from Iran, several of whom were forced to undergo sex reassignment surgery. One person, born male, felt “physically damaged” after a doctor recommended hormone therapy and then surgery to become a woman.
The State Department’s human rights report also comes just days before the June 30 deadline for a finalized nuclear deal with Iran.
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