A federal judge on Monday blocked President Donald Trump's ban on transgender personnel from serving in the U.S. military, though she upheld a block on the Pentagon paying for sex-change procedures.
U.S. District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly ordered the government to "revert to the status quo" that was in effect before Trump ordered the contentious ban.
At the same time, however, she dismissed the plaintiffs' motion to block a ban on funding for sex-reassignment surgery.
Trump's predecessor Barack Obama took the historic decision to allow openly transgender recruits to serve in the military, a move that was due to go into full effect in July this year.
The new administration announced in June a six-month delay on implementing that ruling, then in July Trump surprised Pentagon leaders by announcing on Twitter a full ban on transgender people serving "in any capacity."
The president signed a document at the end of August ordering the Pentagon to no longer enlist transgender recruits but leaving the Pentagon to decide the fate of those already serving.
Trump stressed to Defense Secretary Jim Mattis that the Pentagon should no longer cover the costs of medical treatment associated with the gender reassignment surgery of those troops already serving.
He gave the Pentagon until March 23, 2018 to craft a new policy on transgender service members.
Estimates about the number of transgender people serving in the U.S. military vary from 1,320 up to 15,000, out of 1.5 million active duty troops.
The lawsuit against the president's order was filed by five transgender service members in August, citing the uncertainty that surrounded their future careers.