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Donald Trump bans transgender people from US military

President Donald Trump announced Wednesday that transgender people may not serve “in any capacity” in the US military

world Updated: Jul 27, 2017 00:26 IST
HT Correspondent
US President Donald Trump at a rally in Youngstown, Ohio on July 25, 2017.
US President Donald Trump at a rally in Youngstown, Ohio on July 25, 2017. (Reuters Photo)

US President Donald Trump announced on Wednesday that transgender people will not be allowed to serve in the US military “in any capacity” any longer, reversing a 2016 order by the Barack Obama administration.

Trump made this announcement in a string of tweets, taking even the Pentagon by surprise.

“After consultation with my Generals and military experts, please be advised that the United States Government will not accept or allow … Transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the U.S. Military. Our military must be focused on decisive and overwhelming … ...victory and cannot be burdened with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgender in the military would entail,” he tweeted.

The Obama administration opened up the US military to transgender people in July 2016. It was the culmination of a process started in 2015, which allowed women to serve in all wings of the armed forces, including combat units.

In 2016, Eric Fanning became the first openly gay secretary of army.

There are an estimated 6,630 transgender individuals in active military service out of 1.3 million personnel, according to a 2016 study by the think tank Rand Corp. It said 18 countries allowed transgender personnel to openly serve in their militaries, including Australia, Canada, Israel and the United Kingdom.