Discriminatory nationality laws against women
In the LEVANT Region, Jordan, Palestine, Lebanon, Iraq and Syria it is common for a women not to pass on their nationalities to their husbands and children, where as it has been reported that a mother can pass on her nationality to her child only if they are illegitimate or born of a stateless father.
In Jordan, the family law stands very tough against women treating them as second class citizens on many occassions. For example: the husband is the legal guardian of the children; the wife is only entitled to custody, that is ofcourse if the wife remains single, shall she decide to remarry she automaticlly loses custody of her children to her ex-husband.
While a Jordanian woman marrying a non-Jordanian cannot pass her nationality to her “foreign” husband. There seems to be rules where this can be surpassed, but then again those rules and regulations are far to restricted and require a lot of financial sacrifices as the “non-Jordanian husband has to fulfils specific conditions,including investment in the country, residence for at least four years with the intention of permanent residence, and legal employment that does not compete with Jordanians, its just like saying here, we allow you to surpass those laws but we make them impossible for you on so many different levels so don’t bother trying.
Aparently,the Nationality Law is based on blood ties and not on land, the children of a Jordanian male are Jordanians wherever they are born, and a minor (below the age of 18) whose Jordanian father acquires a foreign citizenship can retain his/her Jordanian citizenship. So what about the mothers? Women should be able to pass citizenship to their children…but it’s not the case, there is no equality when it comes to citzenship rights to women, it a male dominated society after all, but when does this stop? Will it ever stop?
Laws have been said to give and gurantee women equal citizenship rights like men, however this seems void words on paper where as if you were to practice such laws in reality they don’t exist, the lines between women and men rights are clearly segregated in our country, favoring men over women in every occassion.
Many have even argued that a women should not pass citizenship to their children because children are to named after their fathers as per the Muslim Sharīah, but then again I wonder, how does passing your citenship to your children conflict with them carrying their fathers family name?
Sadly today we live in a nation that is divided by religious, ethnic, tribal, linguistic, regional and class differences. Women not being able to give their children citizenship is such a discriminatory act and a heart breaking one for the matter.
I hope to live to see the day where this will change….
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