A coalition of human rights groups, including the Center for Military Human Rights Korea, issued a statement saying that the ruling created hope for sexual minorities and demanded that the military not appeal it.
"Staff Sgt. Byun Hui-su should be smiling brightly now after the court victory and going back to her colleagues, but she is no longer here," the statement said. "The ruling today is a legal triumph that corrected unjust discrimination, but it's also a painful lesson in delayed justice."
In a text message sent to reporters, the army said it respects the court's ruling and will hold "comprehensive" discussions on how to respond. The army said it hasn't decided whether to appeal.
At the time of Byun's death, the Defense Ministry expressed condolences but said the military had no ongoing discussions about allowing transgender people to serve.