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Over 9,000 children of Jordanian women married to foreigners apply for IDs

By Rana Husseini - Jan 27,2015 - Last updated at Jan 27,2015

AMMAN — The Civil Status and Passports Department (CSPD) has received 9,741 applications to issue special identification cards for children of Jordanian women married to foreigners since the beginning of the year, CSPD Director Marwan Qteishat said Tuesday.

“Since the regulations were issued on January 4, we have issued 965 identification cards and processed 2,148 applications,” Qteishat told The Jordan Times.

The official said families swamped “our departments wanting to obtain identification cards and we had to designate specific days based on the odd and even national numbers of the Jordanian mothers”.

The IDs will help these children obtain driving licences and benefit from other government services such as free healthcare and education, as well as being able to obtain work permits, own property and invest in Jordan, Qteishat explained. 

Last year, the government announced that it was granting children of Jordanian women married to foreigners certain privileges and facilities to ease their lives.

The privileges are granted provided that their mothers have been residing in Jordan for a minimum of five years, including 180 days every year, according to Qteishat.

The official urged applicants to “take their time because there is no deadline for the application and everyone who is eligible will get the special ID”.

Interior Ministry Spokesperson Ziad Zu’bi said the ministry established an ombudsman committee, headed by the assistant of the citizenship director, when the regulations were issued earlier this month.

“This committee’s job is to follow up on any complaint from applicants regarding the procedures at the CSPD, but so far we have not received any major complaint,” Zu’bi told The Jordan Times.

Government officials have said in the past that there are 88,983 Jordanian women married to non-Jordanians and these families have 355,932 children registered with the CSPD.

Women’s rights activists have for years been demanding that Jordanian women be allowed to pass on their citizenship to their children and spouses, a right that only men enjoy.

Individuals and entities who oppose granting citizenship to family members of these women, particularly those with Palestinian husbands, say such a measure will only work to ensure “Israel’s ultimate plan of creating a substitute homeland for Palestinians in Jordan”.

Palestinian refugees after the 1948 Arab-Israeli war and those who were living in the West Bank when it was occupied by Israel in 1967 were given citizenship. 

Foreigners married to Jordanian women:

55,606 Palestinians 

8,486 Egyptians

7,731 Syrians

4,549 Saudis 

2,822 Iraqis

2,516 Americans 

2,048 Lebanese

Source: Interior Ministry

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