By Yahoo.com


     Sydney (AFP) - Australia's highest court on Wednesday recognised the existence of a third "non-specific" gender that is neither male nor female, in a landmark ruling campaigners said will help end years of discrimination.


    The High Court ruled that not everyone should be forced to identify as a man or woman when dealing with officials, saying some people could legitimately describe themselves as gender neutral.

    "The High Court... recognises that a person may be neither male nor female, and so permits the registration of a person's sex as 'non‑specific'," it said in a unanimous judgement.

    The decision ended a long legal battle by sexual equality campaigner Norrie to overturn a New South Wales state edict that gender is an inherently "binary" concept involving only men or women.

    "I'm overjoyed," the Sydney-based activist said. "It's been a long time from start to end but this has been a great outcome.