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An Italian passport
The inside of a United States passport

A passport is a travel document that says that the person who owns it is a citizen of the country on the passport. A passport asks that the person carrying it be allowed to enter and pass through other countries. They also allow a person to re-enter their country. Passports are given by national governments.

Passports usually have a person's picture, signature, date of birth, nationality. Many countries are now issuing passports with biometric properties. This helps confirm that the person carrying a passport is the real owner. These countries have passports that use biometrics: Malaysia, Australia, Greece, Israel, New Zealand, Japan, Portugal, Sweden, the United Kingdom, the United States, Germany, Ireland, Poland, Italy, Slovenia, Singapore, Thailand, India and the Republic of Korea .

In 1920, the International Conference on Passports, Customs Formalities and Through Tickets made a law that said passports must be issued in French and at least one other language. Now, many countries issue passports in English and the language(s) of the issuing country.

References[change | change source]

  • Lloyd, Martin (2003). The Passport: The History of Man's Most Travelled Document. Stroud, UK: Sutton Publishing. ISBN 0-7509-2964-2.
  • Salter, Mark B. (2003). "Rights of Passage: The Passport in International Relations." Boulder: Lynne Rienner.
  • Torpey, John (2000). "The Invention of the Passport: Surveillance, Citizenship, and the State." Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.