Serbian officer forced to retire after coming out as transgender

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An activist group in Serbian has submitted a complaint after it says a transgender veteran officer in the country’s military was forcibly retired after coming out as transgender.

According to activist group Egal’s complaint, the officer, identified only as Helena, was forced to retire after a “psychiatric diagnosis” deemed that her being trans could “threaten the reputation” of the army.

The complaint was submitted to the Serbian commissioner for the protection of equality on Wednesday.

According to the statement from Egal, Helena said: “Though the military hospital told me I am fit for military service, someone in the defence ministry claims I threaten the reputation of the army.”

Helena, who spent almost half of her life serving in the army, began to transition recently.

The commission acts independently as a watchdog, and is appointed by Parliament.

Serbia, a country hoping to join the EU, is under pressure to legislate to protect minorities.