Tunisia has abolished a decades-old ban on Muslim women marrying non-Muslims as the president seeks to secure equal rights for the country’s female population.
The announcement came a month after President Beji Caid Essebsi called for the government to lift the ban dating back to 1973, arguing that existing practice violates Tunisia’s constitution, adopted in 2014 in the wake of the Arab Spring revolution.
He created a commission, led by a female lawyer and rights activists, aimed at drafting revised rules.
Until now a non-Muslim man who wished to marry a Muslim Tunisian woman had to convert to Islam and submit a certificate of his conversion as proof while a Muslim Tunisian man is allowed to marry a non-Muslim woman.
Human rights groups in the North African country had campaigned for the ban’s abolition, saying it undermined the fundamental human right to choose a spouse.