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Birth certificate ok to prove Tunisian is free to marry in Turkey

Hi forum members,

I hope someone can give me advice regarding the subject title, and my apologies if the outline of my issue and questions is a bit long!

I'm British and I have my affirmation of marital status document notarised by a UK notary public and legalised by the FCO. The issue is for my fiance who is Tunisian. Tunisian's have their marital status outlined on their birth certificate i.e. single, married or divorced and when marrying in Tunisia that's enough proof of eligibility to marry. However I'm not sure if that will be enough in Turkey once translated and stamped by the relevant authority over there? We've done some research in Tunisia and received the following advice but I'm not convinced and would appreciate any advice from forum members with experience of marriage in Turkey from the same or similar countries i.e. Morocco and Algeria:

- A local town hall in Tunisia (Baladiya): they claim to know nothing about a certificat de célibat and refuse to issue one. I've read online that it should be possible and Tunisians that have married in other countries have been able to get this from the town hall and attested by a notary public. Should we go to another town hall and see if we get a different response?
- A lawyer: claims it's fine for us to marry in the Tunisian Embassy in Ankara. We will need birth certificate, medical test and proof that I am also Muslim. I don't think this is correct as I know we couldn't marry in the British Embassy but I could be wrong.
- A notary public in Tunisia: claims we should take my fiance's birth certificate to the Turkish embassy in Tunisia and they will attest and apostil.

It would be easier to marry in Tunisia however we don't have time. I'm moving to the Emirates for work shortly and don't have time to post banns in the UK (28 days) or in Tunisia (14 days).

If anything is unclear or you need more information, please ask. I appreciate any help.

Best regards,



  • @hayley
    It is more difficult and expensive to marry in Turkey than Tunisia and while you were spending time obtaining the required documents for a Turkish wedding you could have obtained the CNI for a Tunisian wedding.

    All weddings in Turkey are civil wedddings and are not performed in Embassies so your advice about marrying in the Tunisian embassy in Ankara is not correct.
    You can try another town hall in Tunisia for the certificat de celibat as advice and behaviour varies greatly in Tunisia. Normally the certificat de celibat is a statement issued by the Embassy in Turkey.

    No foreign woman needs to show she is a muslim to marry a muslim man. Only foreign muslim men must do this when they marry in Tunisia.

    Why dont you marry in the Emirates?
  • Thanks for your reply Alethia. I really appreciate your help. We'll just try another town hall.

    I'm not in Tunisia at the moment and can't get out there right now because of work commitments and getting ready for the move. When I can go out it will be Christmas and the British Embassy closed for the holidays. That's why the CNI route isn't an option.

    Re. Emirates. My initial research suggested getting married out there would be a complicated process. The basic process for a woman to invite and sponsor a 'husband' is a challenge in itself if you're not a doctor, teacher or engineer. Added to that, Tunisian's are considered 'High Risk' for the Emirates.

    Anyway, thanks again.
  • edited December 2017
    Unfortunately Tunisians are considerd "high risk" in most countries.
    Its only a thought but I wonder if the Tunisian authorities will accept the documents you had prepared for Turkey instead of the traditional CNI.
    Many nationalities including Americans only have a statement from their embassy to say the are free to marry, they do not provide the CNI. Thats a British tradition due to the Marriage with Foreigners Act 1906
    All the Tunisians want is a document to say your free to marry.
  • That's a great idea and you could be right. It's essentially the same thing really and goes
    into even more detail than the CNI. I'll get my fiance to check tomorrow. Thanks for your support Alethia.
  • @Halifax . There is no Cni issued here and your fiance will have to shop around, which will take time or have a notaire attest to the fact that he is single. As you rightly point out all life events are noted on our birth certificates.

    Just as an info note , a new law in Tunisia now makes it legal for a Muslim female to marry a non Muslim man.
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