South Korea’s supreme court overturns military convictions of two gay soldiers in landmark ruling

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by Megan Richardson

April 29, 2022 C.E.

South Korea’s military court 2017 ruling that convicted two gay soldiers for having sex outside military facilities has been thrown out by the nation’s top court, according to The Guardian. The new ruling is a major victory for gay rights leading to better protection of privacy and tackling discrimination against minorities. 

This initial ruling was based on the country’s 1962 military criminal act article 92-6, which prohibits same-sex conduct among military service members. The supreme court’s new ruling sets the precedent that consensual same-sex sexual activity can no longer be punishable for military service members.

In the past year, a district court charged South Korea’s army with unlawfully discriminating against its first transgender soldier, Byun Hui-su. She was discharged for undergoing gender reassignment surgery, and months later found dead. 

This district court ruling and now the new supreme court ruling suggest there is now momentum towards tackling LGBTQ discrimination in South Korea’s military.


Era: Today (2017 C.E. - 2024 C.E.)
Year: 2022 C.E.
Topic: LGBTQ+ rights & well-being and Military
Region: East Asia
Country: South Korea
Actor Type: Courts and Nations

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