Government drops ear demand in ID photos

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Norwegian police wanted to demand visible ears in new passport photos, as a means of confirming identification. Objections poured in from those wearing headgear for religious reasons, and now the government has listened.

People wearing turbans, hijabs or other headgear will be able to keep them in place, also when having official ID photos taken for passports or ID cards. Justice Minister Monica Mæland of the Conservative Party told state broadcaster NRK that she thinks new passports and ID cards will offer enough security without showing their subject’s ears.

Mæland cited better procedures, more secure documentation and better biometric comparisons. She conceded that she was setting aside the advice of Norway’s own police experts, whom she oversees, but she maintained that “it’s not necessary to demand more security than necessary.”

It’s a victory for Sikhs, Muslims and others who have objected to showing their ears in public. They claimed it violated their religious freedom.

newsinenglish.no staff