LGBT
Denmark will declassify being transgender as a mental disorder, starting on 1 January 2017iStock

Starting 1 January 2017 Denmark will remove being transgender from a list of "mental illnesses" Parliament health committee lawmakers said on Tuesday.

Deputy chairman of the committee, Flemming Moller Mortensen told AFP, "It is completely inappropriate to call it a sickness."

He added, "There is a longstanding wish from the trans community in Denmark to have it removed from the health ministry's clinical guidelines on illnesses."

The decision to declassify is seen as a move to put pressure on the World Health Organisation (WHO), which still has transsexualism on its list of mental illnesses.

Mortensen said Denmark has "no more patience" with WHO, which will discuss the issue later this year.

Amnesty International said that the country is "a role model for transgendered people's rights."

Amnesty's Denmark chief Trine Christensen said, "This is a huge step – not just for transgender people in Denmark but around the world – that Danish politicians have so clearly approved removing transgender from the list of mental illnesses. Amnesty would also like to commend the government for its effort in the WHO, where it has worked to have the disease classification system changed."

LGBT Denmark, a rights group, said, "To remove transgender from the section of mental disorders means removing an institutionalised stigmatisation of trans people."

According to The Guardian, in 2014, Denmark became the first European country that did not need a medical statement by an expert for trans people to change their gender legally. The right to self determine came with a few restrictions, one being age. The minimum age for self determination is 18. In other European countries, forced sterilisation, a result of hormone treatment or surgery, is the only way to transition legally,