A new bill was proposed in Britain on Friday which will allow transsexuals to marry and be issued with new birth certificates.

The draft Gender Recognition Bill will require transsexuals wishing to register in their chosen gender to apply to a Gender Recognition Panel consisting of lawyers and medics, Reuters reported. Criteria include applicants living in their new gender for at least two years.

Priests will have the right, however, to refuse to marry a couple if either bride or groom is transsexual.

The draft bill was published exactly one year after the European Court of Human Rights declared that current UK laws were in breach of human rights.

In April this year, transsexual Elizabeth Bellinger lost a legal battle to have her 22-year marriage declared legal, when she took her case to the House of Lords.

The proposed bill follows the sympathetic response to Bellinger’s case by the House of Lords, who were unable to judge in her favour due to incompatibilities between the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 and the 1998 Human Rights Act.

Britain is one of four European countries that currently do not legally recognise sex changes, along with Ireland, Albania and Andorra.

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