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Today is Wednesday, November 28, 2007


Actress Petitions Court to Change Sex, Name Entries in Family Registry

[INCHEON, KOREA] - Ha Ri-su, an actress who underwent a sex-change operation, has asked a court to change her sex in her family registry. "I want to be registered as a woman," Ms. Ha said.

Last Thursday, Ms. Ha submitted a written proposal to the Incheon District Court that her sex be changed in the registry from male to female and her name from Lee Gyeong-yeop to Lee Gyeong-eun.

"Ms. Ha wants to live the life of a woman, and that is what she is doing," an official at the talent agency that represents the actress said. Ms. Ha reportedly tried to keep the proposal private because she did not want to reveal the process of her sex-change operation.

The judiciary's responses to similar cases has been mixed. In April, the family court at the Daegu District Court said in its ruling in the case of a 25-year-old woman who underwent a sex-change operation to become a man: "Even if the sex genes were different from the genes of an average woman from birth, there is no evidence that she should have been seen as a man from the beginning." The court dismissed the case.

On the other hand, the Busan District Court ruled last July to accept the petition of a 30-year-old man who had an operation to become a woman, saying, "She has satisfied the medical and legal conditions for being considered a woman through the operation."

The Incheon District Court said it will assign a judge to Ms. Ha's case, hold a hearing and reach a decision in about two weeks.

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