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Did Bukele threaten to jail doctors who perform gender reassignment surgery?

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Did Bukele ban gender reassignment surgery on minors? (PHOTO: Shutterstock / Getty Images)
  • Did Bukele ban gender reassignment surgery in El Salvador?
  • Misinformation is taking over.
  • El Salvador faces setbacks in human rights

Nayib Bukele, the president of El Salvador, did not threaten to jail doctors who perform gender reassignment surgery on children.

Social media users have been sharing this claim without providing details.

Messages on X, Instagram and Facebook state that Bukele «has proposed that doctors who perform gender reassignment surgeries on minors will go to jail.»

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The posts have been circulating since January and include a photo of the president who was reelected on February 4 for another term.

The accounts add the question: «Do you agree with this measure?» Comments include things like: «I’m not from El Salvador, but I completely agree.»

FACT: It is false that the Salvadoran president, Nayib Bukele has threatened to jail doctors who perform gender reassignment surgery on minors.

There is no record of such statements that can be found on the internet and his representatives deny the claims.

Did Bukele ban gender reassignment surgery for minors?

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It is not possible to find a record of Bukele publicly addressing the topic of gender reassignment surgery for minors.

Despite this, the rumors continue to spread online.

The president of El Salvador’s press office confirmed to EFE Verifica that the rumors are false.

It’s important to take what you see on social media with a grain of salt.

El Salvador does not have a good record on trans rights

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PHOTO: Shutterstock

However, the reality is that in trans rights have faced setbacks in El Salvador since Bukele took office.

Human Rights Watch noted: «Since President Nayib Bukele’s party won a supermajority in the Assembly after the 2021 elections, democratic institutions have been under attack by him and his allies.»

This 2022 report states that these initiatives included promoting trans rights.

The LGBTQ+ community in general has suffered under his leadership.

The government refuses to recognize the identity of transgender people

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PHOTO: Shutterstock

For example, the gender identity law remains stalled. The National Assembly failed in 2023 to comply with a Supreme Court ruling.

The court found it was discriminatory not to allow transgender people to legally change their names.

A study by the human rights organization Cristosal in May 2023 highlighted that, «El Salvador refuses to recognize the identity of transgender people.»

It also added: «The National Assembly must comply with a recent decision by the Supreme Court…»

Transgender violence and discrimination remain unaddressed

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PHOTO: Shutterstock

Finally, the transgender community «faces violence and discrimination that remains unaddressed.»

According to HRW and organizations like Amnesty International, there is a disturbing number of unsolved murders of trans women.

Although President Nayib Bukele did not explicitly ban gender reassignment surgery for minors, there are serious questions about their rights in El Salvador.

This country faces setbacks regarding the legal recognition of gender identity.

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