Afghan President Ashraf Ghani has approved the inclusion of the mother’s name on the country’s identity card. This change has been opposed by activists for years and experts consider an important step towards gender equality as the father’s name was already included.
“The mother’s name, along with other personal data, is officially noted on the national ID cards,” Ghani’s spokesman announced on Twitter.
“This is a hugely important step,” Heather Barr, a women’s rights activist with Human Rights Watch, told DPA. “It will have immediate ramifications for women in the real world, making it easier for them to obtain and travel with education, health care, passports and other documentation for their children,” he added.
In many countries in the region, only the father’s name appears in official documents. In Afghanistan, activists complain that this makes women invisible.