Engaging with the United Nations human rights system can seem daunting to activists. And yet, it can lead to outstanding results – the kind of achievements that are relevant not just for one’s country, but at the global level.

Enkhmaa Enkhbold, the executive director of LGBT Centre Mongolia, built her own experience in the field by engaging with numerous UN human rights mechanisms over the years – with organisations like ILGA World and others ready to provide support when necessary. In 2022, Enkhmaa engaged with the UN Committee for Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, obtaining a result of historic significance: for the first time, the Committee referred ICD-11 (the latest International Classification of Diseases, which declassified trans identities as a mental disorder) among the recommendations made to Mongolia on trans persons.

On this new episode of ILGA World’s Making Rainbow Waves podcast, we met Enkhmaa as her organisation prepares to follow up on the historic recommendations obtained at the international level, and ensuring they can influence positive change in her country. Together, we went over Enkhmaa’s journey as an activist, the different international human rights mechanisms, what goes behind the scenes when advocates access these spaces, and the current situation of the Mongolian LGBTI community.

“Our primary hope is to have a community centre of our own, a safe space for the community”, she told us. “Of course, we want to walk the streets without retaliation, without fear and stigma: that’s, I think, a given for all of us, right? That’s what we wish for, and that’s why we’re fighting for this.”

Click here to read the episode’s transcription

Making Rainbow Waves 
is a podcast by ILGA World, telling the stories and raising the voices of LGBTI human rights defenders worldwide.
Listen to the episode and subscribe to Making Rainbow Waves via
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This episode of Making Rainbow Waves was hosted by Daniele Paletta and edited by Kevin Mwachiro.
Transcription and translation to Spanish by Luca Bermejo.