Topic: Citizenship


Kenya’s Controversial Digital ID Scheme Faces Pushback

Kenya ushered in a national biometric ID system with little public input. Now, advocates are challenging the government in the courts to ensure inclusive policies and data privacy.

December 19, 2019 | Michele Eken
A woman being photographed

Case Watch: Ukraine ICJ Ruling Strengthens Protections against Discriminatory Use of Citizenship Law

In agreeing to proceed with a complaint by Ukraine against the Russian Federation, the International Court of Justice underlined the principle that states cannot use exclusionary citizenship laws to discriminate, and that such action can be challenged before its judges.

November 19, 2019 | Natasha Arnpriester & Laura Bingham
A man views a crowd of protesters from inside a bus

How Weaponizing Citizenship Hurts the Justice System

No one should have their citizenship revoked as a form of punishment. It’s wrong—and it undermines the rule of law.

March 04, 2019 | Natasha Arnpriester
A woman and a child near a tent

Saving Newborn Rohingya from a Legal Abyss

The government of Bangladesh has already promised to uphold its obligation to register newborn Rohingya refugees. For the sake of international law—and the children’s future—it must stop dragging its feet.

August 10, 2018 | Natasha Arnpriester
A newborn baby wrapped in a red blanket

Case Watch: How a Decision on Danish Naturalization Law Leaves Issues Unresolved

A ruling from the European Court of Human Rights glosses over the human story of a torture survivor's long struggle with stupefying bureaucracy.

January 26, 2017 | Laura Bingham

“I Am Kuwaiti”

Fifty years ago, when Kuwait became a country, the bidoon were cut out of the deal. They have been stateless ever since. Photographer Greg Constantine has been documenting their stories.

January 08, 2013 | Sebastian Kohn
Portrait of bidoon man

France’s New Government Moves Quickly on Discriminatory Police Stops

France’s new prime minister, Jean-Marc Ayrault, says his government is planning to introduce a system of “receipts” aimed at tracking police stops that have been found to focus disproportionately on Arab and African youths.

June 01, 2012 | Lanna Hollo

Israel’s Supreme Court Condones Discriminatory Citizenship Law

In a setback for equal rights, the Israeli Supreme Court rejected a series of petitions challenging a law that, among other things, makes it impossible for Palestinians to acquire Israeli citizenship through marriage.

January 12, 2012 | Sebastian Kohn

Citizenship and State Succession in the Sudans

In July the Republic of South Sudan became Africa's newest independent state. The Sudanese government refuses to consider the hundreds of thousands of "southerners" who reside in the North as citizens.

December 19, 2011 | Bronwen Manby

Abusing Citizenship in Zambia—Again

The manipulation of citizenship laws for political purposes has long been a popular way of excluding opponents and silencing critics. In Zambia it's become all too familiar.

October 17, 2011 | Sebastian Kohn

The Return: Dilemmas for Congolese Refugees in Rwanda

Tens of thousands of Congolese refugees are poised to return to their home country after more than a decade of exile in neighboring Rwanda. They face a cold welcome.

September 09, 2011 | Lucy Hovil

Why the Convention on Statelessness Matters

The Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness, which is marking its 50th anniversary, remains the best international tool we have to help the more than 12 million people around the world who have no nationality anywhere.

August 30, 2011 | Sebastian Kohn

Case Watch: Battling Statelessness in Slovenia

Twenty years after the break-up of the Yugoslav federation, the European Court of Human Rights is focusing on the plight of 25,000 people who were erased from Slovenia's registry of residents after the republic declared its independence.

July 12, 2011 | Denise Bell

Europe Finds Some Religions More Equal Than Others

By banning headscarves, what message is Europe sending to its Muslim population? That we are open, tolerant and pluralistic, but not towards you?

April 11, 2011 | Maxim Ferschtman

Time to Turn Legal Victories into Better Lives for Roma

Despite considerable legal gains, discrimination against Roma remains widespread in Europe, and while violence has subsided in some countries, it has increased in others.

April 07, 2011 | Tracey Gurd

Dominican Reforms Fall Short

The Dominican Republic is talking up reforms in its discriminatory process for acquiring national identity documents. A closer look reveals a much less encouraging picture.

March 31, 2011 | Indira Goris

Stateless in Kuwait: Who Are the Bidoon?

Believe it or not, one of the richest countries on earth simply cannot be bothered to document the size of its stateless population, let alone resolve this long-standing problem.

March 24, 2011 | Sebastian Kohn

Something Rotten in Denmark

It's rare that statelessness finds its way into the headlines. But with one minister resigning and another now under attack, a fight over citizenship policy is roiling the political scene in Denmark.

March 18, 2011 | Laura Bingham

Case Watch: Roma Sterilization Case Reaches European Court

V. C. was just twenty years old when she was sterilized after giving birth in a Slovakian hospital. She claims her Roma ethnicity played a vital role in her sterilization. Next week, the European Court of Human Rights will hear the case.

March 17, 2011 | Margot Dickson

Denied a Shot at a Good Education

Europe's top human-rights watchdog issued an urgent rebuke to the Czech Republic last week: Stop the continued racial segregation of Roma children in schools, which damns them to "a future as second-class citizens."

March 10, 2011 | James A. Goldston
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