Afghan Sign Language

Afghan Sign Language
Jalalabad Sign Language
Native to Afghanistan
Native speakers
1,000 (2012)[1]
Language codes
ISO 639-3 afg
Glottolog afgh1239[2]

Afghan Sign Language is the deaf sign language of Jalalabad in eastern Afghanistan, possibly with some presence in Kabul. It has been encouraged in the country's only school for the deaf, and derives from the Deaf-community sign language of Jalalabad, but it's not known what connection it may have, if any, with the sign languages of other cities with established deaf populations, which are principally Kabul, Mazar-e Sharif, Herat, and Kandahar. American Sign Language was used in the Jalalabad school for a few years, and so may have had some influence on Afghan Sign.[3]


  1. Afghan Sign Language at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)
  2. Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin; Bank, Sebastian, eds. (2016). "Afghan Sign Language". Glottolog 2.7. Jena: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
  3. ISO 639-3 Registration Authority: Request for New Language Code Element in ISO 639-3
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