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Children May Be Allowed Both Parents' Surnames
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Newborns in China may be allowed to be given family names made up of the surnames of their parents, Chinese newspaper reported Monday.

The move, which is now a draft regulation, will greatly reduce the proportion of repeated names, the country's Ministry of Public Security was quoted as saying.

"A child can follow its father or mother by surname or it can use a combination of the two surnames," said the draft.

For example, the father is surnamed Guo and the mother is surnamed Zhang, then their child may be given a family name of Guozhang, despite Guo or Zhang.

Arabian numbers or symbols are still not allowed in names.

China now has 1,601 family names and 125.10 million Chinese have family names with only one Chinese character, the rest have between two and five.

Once the draft regulation comes into effect, the country's family names will significantly boost to 1.28 million.

(Shanghai Daily June 12, 2007)


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