IOC-Protest, Lausanne, Nov. 19, 2009 (Photo: Ärger)

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Zwischengeschlecht.org Press Release, 22.01.2010:

IOC IAAF: Stop Intersex Discrimination!

After a "scientific" symposium on "ambiguous" gender cases (a.k.a. intersexed persons / "hermaphrodites") organised by the International Olympic Committee (IOC), the World Athletic Federation (IAAF) and the World Football Federation (FIFA), IOC medical commission chairman Arne Ljungqvist informed the public about the planned measures.

According to an exclusive AP-report, the IOC aims to reintroduce mandatory sex test on female athletes, which were abolished in 1999, via "pre-participation health examinations" for aspiring athletes. "We emphasized that these exams could be a very important and useful tool for identifying athletes with these disorders," Ljungqvist is quoted.

Data of athletes suspected to have "disorders of sex development" would be transferred to planned strategically located "health centres", where "It's for the experts to decide what to do with each individual case."

Ljungqvist made no secret of what fate would await "suspicious" athletes there: "Most cases, Ljungqvist said, require treatment such as surgery or hormone therapy."

Consulted "medical experts" in a New York Times article also shared the same views:

"'Those who agree to be treated will be permitted to participate," said Dr. Maria New, a panel participant and an expert on sexual development disorders. 'Those who do not agree to be treated on a case-by-case basis will not be permitted.'"

And: "'We did not address fairness,' said Dr. Joe Leigh Simpson of Florida International University."

This is even more irritating, as many "ambiguous" athletes reportedly have no illegitimate advantages compared to "normal" women.

The human rights advocacy group Zwischengeschlecht.org condemns this attempt to re-introduce mandatory sex tests for female athletes via a back door.

We also strongly condemn IOC's notion of apparently blanket exclusion of "ambiguous" athletes, unless they agree to undergo potentially most harmful genital surgery and hormone treatments.


For decades, victims of such medically not indicated treatments condemn them as violation of their corporal integrity, as "medical torture" and "forced transsexualisation".

In Germany, a surgeon was found guilty before court for such a treatment, and the UN-committee CEDAW criticized such treatments as a human rights violation.

As the inhumane tug of war regarding the future career of "suspected" South Africa athlete Caster Semenya reveals, in many cases, the medical trade has no reliable knowledge about "ambiguous" bodies anyway—in 50% of the cases with XY karyotype, they can't determine neither a diagnosis nor the causes.

The human rights advocacy group Zwischengeschlecht.org demands the prohibition of forced genital surgeries on intersexed people and "Human Rights for Hermaphrodites too!"


Kind regards

n e l l a
Daniela Truffer
Founding Member Human Rights Advocacy Group Zwischengeschlecht.org
Founding Member Swiss Self Help Group Intersex.ch
Memebr Intersexuelle Menschen e.V.
Member XY-Frauen
Mobile +41 (0) 76 398 06 50
presse@zwischengeschlecht.info

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