JAC members,
The message below is forwarded to the JAC list for information. I propose no action for the time being. It still is my opinion that this is a matter for 639-6 rather than 639-2/3.
Best regards,
Håvard Hjulstad
  Standard Norge / Standards Norway
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From: Iyaaz J Naseem [mailto:[log in to unmask]]
Sent: Wednesday, July 11, 2007 8:50 AM
To: Håvard Hjulstad
Subject: Re: ISO 639 encoding proposal: Mahl

Dear Sir,
I am a native speaker of Mahl. I agree that Mahl is very simillar to Divehi. But one thing to be considered is the standard Divehi and the standard Mahl are different. The standard written and spoken Divehi is the dialect spoken in Male', Maldives. Other dialects used else where in the Maldives are only spoken but not written. The standard written and spoken Mahl is the dialect spoken in Minicoy, India. And the native speakers of both the standards find difficult to follow the other, due to the differences in vocabulary and grammer.
Since standard Mahl is different from that of Divehi, in Minicoy even in schools Mahl is taught as the standard and since we don't have a seperate ISO 639 code it is very difficult for us to submit our literature in modern facilities such as Wikipedia.
So we request to encode atleast in ISO 639-3. The code requested is: dmh
It can be like this:
ISO 639-1: dv
ISO 639-2: div
ISO 639-3: variously:
div — Divehi (in Maldives)
dmh — Mahl (in Minicoy)
Like this
ISO 639-1: ps
ISO 639-2: pus
ISO 639-3: variously:
pus — Pashto (generic)
Central Pashto
pbu — Northern Pashto
pbt — Southern Pashto
Thank you once again.
Best regards,
Iyaaz J Naseem

On 9/19/06, Håvard Hjulstad <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
Dear Iyaaz J Naseem,
Your proposal to encode "Mahl" in ISO 639-1 and ISO 639-2 has been received some time ago and discussed by the ISO 639 RAs Joint Advisory Committee (JAC). I am sorry that the proposal has been somewhat long in the pipeline.
Part of the reason for the delay is the finalization of ISO 639-3, which extends the alpha-3 language code to include some 7000 languages. That part of ISO 639 will become an International Standard very soon.
ISO 639-2, MahlSO 639-3 and other relevant sources list Mahl as a variant name for Divehi; Maldivian, which is encoded as div (also in ISO 639-2). Please see http://www.sil.org/iso639-3/documentation.asp?id=div for documentation of how the item is encoded in ISO 639-3; please also follow the link from that entry to the Ethnologue database.
ISO 639 RAs-JAC has rejected the proposal to encode the item in ISO 639-1 (alpha-2 identifier). ISO 639 RAs-JAC furthermore finds that it is not demonstrated that the proposed item is different from the item that is encoded as div.
Please send any comment to me and I shall forward it to the JAC for consideration.
Best regards,
Håvard Hjulstad
(secretary ISO 639 RAs-JAC)
Håvard Hjulstad
  Standard Norge / Standards Norway
  direkte tel / direct tel: (+47) 67838645
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