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South Korean
military to improve rights for gay soldiers

South Korean
military to improve rights for gay soldiers

South Korea will consider ways to improve the rights of gay soldiers, the defense ministry said today in Seoul, amid growing calls for equal rights for sexual minorities. Defense minister Yoon Kwang-ung told a parliamentary committee Tuesday that his ministry will review a report from the National Human Rights Commission recommending that regulations penalizing gay soldiers be scrapped or eased. The ministry confirmed Yoon's comments today. According to South Korean military regulations, gay men aren't allowed to serve. Eight soldiers were discharged from the military last year for being gay. All South Korean men are required to serve as conscripts, and officers consult fellow soldiers and seek diagnoses from doctors to determine whether someone is trying to evade service by claiming to be gay. Gay rights groups say that can lead to demeaning practices and exclude those who want to serve their country. (AP)

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