State medical records indicate that from 2006 to 2010, 1,366 Iranians acquired permits to undergo sex change operations.
Khabar-on-line reported on Monday that 56 percent were seeking male-to-female surgery and 44 percent were female-to-male operations.
Iranians seeking sex-change operations have to apply to the courts for a permit, and the case is then forwarded to state medical offices to be processed.
Ayatollah Khomeini, the late leader of the Islamic Republic, legalized sex change operations in 1984. Maryam Khatoon Molkara, who claimed to be the first Iranian to undergo sex change operation in Iran, was instrumental in persuading Ayatollah Khomeini to legalize the operations. Molkara passed away in March of 2012 at the age of 62.
Iran reportedly has one of the world’s highest rates of sex-change surgery.