Trans man makes history in Kosovo by legally changing name and gender on documents

Blert Morina fought a two year court battle for the right to legally change his details on official documents.

A man in Kosovo wearing glasses sits at a table reading a file with sun streaming in the window

After a lengthy legal struggle, trans man Blert Morina has won a landmark case for the right to change his gender marker and name on his documents, becoming the first known person in Kosovo to do so. Another trans person had also changed their details but chose to remain anonymous.

In December, Morina won his case in the Basic Court of Prishtina in Kosovo, which was a huge moment for the country’s LGBT+ community.

Morina shared that while he never experienced physical abuse during the battle for his rights, he “received hundreds of threats, even death threats. These threats (sic) have increased when me and my colleague Lendi…showed up on television and had our first public appearance. In the moment we left television, we received countless messages.”

He told news site Kosovo Two Point Zero “I am so happy that finally my family will be relieved of the pressure they have had in recent years. And most important of all is that other people with the same request as me will not go through this.”

In Ireland earlier this month, Trans and Intersex Pride Dublin organised the No Delay, Gender Recognition For All protest to demand equal rights for those denied them by the Gender Recognition Act. After a review of the Act in November last, the organisers of the protest shared, “the Gender Recognition Act review stated that they will not be implementing non-binary recognition, intersex recognition or recognition for trans people under 16 years.”

LGBT+ rights groups  TENI and BeLonG To stated, “While welcoming the proposed amendments, we are deeply disappointed that the Government did not take this opportunity to implement all the recommendations in the Review Report.”

They continued the changes marked “a missed opportunity for Ireland to continue to set the highest standard in human rights, with legislation that recognises and protects the human rights and equality of every citizen, irrespective of age or gender identity.”

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