Greek church bells ring funeral toll over sex change law

ATHENS (Reuters)

Churches in a western Greek region will ring funeral bells to protest a new law that makes it easier for people to change their legally recognized gender.

Greece’s parliament passed a law which allows people over 15 to change their gender on official documents with a court ruling, without requiring medical tests or sterilization as was the case until now.

The bill laid bare divisions within the left-right coalition government and led to debates between the ruling leftist party and the conservative opposition. It has also angered the powerful Orthodox Church, which demanded it be withdrawn. The clerics’ decision said it was “an outrageous inspiration to allow a person to change gender with a simple application, in a few minutes, contrary to what God gave humans” and called homosexuality a “deadly sin”.

“The frivolous passing of the law, which opposes human nature and biology and leads to the abominable sin of homosexuality, creates unrest and confusion.”

The law was welcomed by human rights activists. Amnesty International said it was a historic step forward for transgender people in Greece.

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