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ADDED ON: 03/27/2021

Germany bans surgeries on intersex babies, but loopholes feared

3/26/21 | Reuters

Germany has banned unnecessary surgeries on babies who are born intersex, neither clearly male or female, but critics warned on Friday that the new law could easily be sidestepped by doctors and parents. Lawmakers in the Bundestag parliament voted late on Thursday to join several European countries in banning cosmetic operations that seek to ensure the child ascribes to traditional notions of male and female. From now on, a family court will have to authorise such surgeries on children diagnosed with “variations of sexual development”, a medical term often used to refer to intersex people. About 1.7% of babies are born intersex, according to the United Nations, with a small proportion undergoing operations to bring the appearance and function of their genitalia into line with that expected of males or females. Research suggests that unnecessary surgeries performed without children’s consent can lead to psychological damage later in life, and intersex rights campaigners broadly welcomed the ban in Germany.

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