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Citizenship Birth, Choice and Abuse?

By John Hargreaves - 23 June 2014 17

australian-passports

I came to Australia at age 3 from the UK. Thus when I reached the age of majority, I had UK citizenship. Like so many other people who came here when they were babies, I didn’t think much about citizenship much. But when I was in National Service, I did think about it and applied for Australian citizenship and was sent my papers in the mail. It felt good. I was now an Australian by choice. I feel no allegiance to the country I left at such a young age.

When I came to run for the ACT Legislative Assembly, I found that differently from the federal Parliament, there is no requirement for candidates to only have Australian citizenship. Dual citizenship is no barrier to being elected. It is in the federal Parliament.

This raises an interesting question. Why is it a barrier for people who choose to become Australian citizens after some extensive soul searching, to represent their fellow citizens? Why should they renounce their prior citizenship? Why should it be that it is mandatory to renounce in some instances but not others?

Should we be able to withdraw citizenship from dual citizenship holders if they engage in activities which could be detrimental to Australia’s safety? If so, why can’t we take it off those who are Australian born religious radicals who engage in such activities? There is ample evidence overseas of nationals in the western world, acting against their own fellow citizens.

I have no difficulty in taking this most cherished of privileges from those who abuse it. There are, of course, practical problems in taking it of native born citizens because they become stateless and where do they go, to where do we deport them?

Citizenship is the greatest honour and privilege which can be bestowed upon an ordinary person. It shows the acceptance into a family of people choosing to live together in peace and mutual support. Abuse of that privilege should not be tolerated.

Perhaps we could send them to Manus Island or Nauru?

What’s Your opinion?


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17 Responses to
Citizenship Birth, Choice and Abuse?
1
Holden Caulfield 12:27 pm
23 Jun 14
#

You can’t hold dual citizenship if you want to be elected to Federal parliament, yet an Australian citizen cannot be our head of state.

This is losing!

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2
dungfungus 12:47 pm
23 Jun 14
#

Holden Caulfield said :

You can’t hold dual citizenship if you want to be elected to Federal parliament, yet an Australian citizen cannot be our head of state.

This is losing!

But Johno can hold a British passport concurrently with his Australian one so, hypothetically, he could return to the UK, mount a coup and become monarch and subsequently our head of state and he still has his Australian citizenship.

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3
DangerMouse 12:57 pm
23 Jun 14
#

Pretty simple question really, and a bit disturbing that an ex MLA doesn’t understand the nuance….. You cannot hold dual citizenship in the federal partliament because you are required to make defence related decisions. In the ACT parliament you would never have the conflict of interest of any decision-making relating to an invasion by Australia of your country of other citizenship…. at least not until the ACT secedes from the rest of Australia. Not a bad option really as residents of Queanbeyan would need passports to come in.

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4
banco 2:06 pm
23 Jun 14
#

Given that an Australian passport is treated like an insurance policy by quite a few people I’d just as soon we did away with dual citizenship entirely.

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5
Jon 3:09 pm
23 Jun 14
#

“Why can’t we take it off those who are Australian born?”

Because we’ve signed up to the ‘Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness’. Article 5 reads in part: “If a law entails loss of nationality, such loss shall be conditional upon the person acquiring another nationality.”

We can remove Australian citizenship from a dual national without rendering that person stateless. If an Australian ONLY has Australian citizenship, what nationality do they then become?

While I agree that being granted citizenship of another country is an honour and privilege, under international law, everyone has the right to a nationality (article 15 of UDHR).

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6
IrishPete 5:57 pm
23 Jun 14
#

As Julie Bishop announces the cancellation of passports of Australian citizens fighting in wars she disapproves of, I wondered what that actually means. Will they be unable to return to Australia, and become Stateless? I presume it only applies to Australian-born people, as otherwise she’d be talking about revoking citizenship not cancelling passports.

I say “wars she disapproves of” because as per the letter in today’s Canberra Times, there are other wars that she isn’t bothered about. And what about all the Ozzie mercenaries reported to be active around the world?

Mind you, a passport isn’t necessary to enter Australia – I managed to do it (unintentionally) when I returned from a trip to Ireland a few years ago, having not noticed that my Permanent Residency visa had expired (they last 5 years). As I had already taken out Ozzie citizenship but not a passport, Immigration at Sydney were a little flummoxed but decided they neither could issue me a new visa nor deny me entry to Oz.

IP

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7
Masquara 8:01 pm
23 Jun 14
#

Jon said :

“Why can’t we take it off those who are Australian born?”

Because we’ve signed up to the ‘Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness’. Article 5 reads in part: “If a law entails loss of nationality, such loss shall be conditional upon the person acquiring another nationality.”

We can remove Australian citizenship from a dual national without rendering that person stateless. If an Australian ONLY has Australian citizenship, what nationality do they then become?

While I agree that being granted citizenship of another country is an honour and privilege, under international law, everyone has the right to a nationality (article 15 of UDHR).

And this ignoramus had his sights set on federal parliament! Unbelievable.

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8
John Hargreaves Ex M 12:21 pm
24 Jun 14
#

Firstly, Masquara, if you’re taking about my thinking about federal parliament, it was never so. I am committed Canberran and Tuggeranongite and federal politics is too far removed from what I tried to do. Don’t bag me out for what you perceive as my failings as a pollie unless you have a track record of having a go. You are entitled to your opinion and you’re entitled to be wrong. I would fight for your right to be both but then you don’t need my help…

Dungfungus has a point, though. I could go back to Britain, mount a coup and put myself up as monarch and be our head of state. The flaw is that I am an unreconstructed Republican. I respect the Brits’ right to have the heirs and successors to the German aristocracy as their sovereigns as I respect their right to accept the notion of succession through birthright and religion.

I have, however, no yearning for such elevated office but am frustrated because my Grand-daughter can’t offer herself up as a candidate as President of this nation. She is female (although the Succession Act in the UK has addressed this lately but Oz hasn’t followed suit), she is a Catholic, no relation to the House of Windsor, and she is an Australian citizen. As a tertiary qualified and intelligent young lady, with no political affiliations, it would be nice if she could aspire to such high office as President, but this is denied her by the pompous and self righteous, blindsided, advocates of retention of the monarchy here.

I didn’t vote for the Sovereign, I didn’t vote for the GG, and I didn’t vote for the PM. The Monarchists didn’t vote for the first two either but still they say we have a democracy. Phooey! We have a constitutional monarchy! Bring on the Revolution!

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9
Holden Caulfield 12:58 pm
24 Jun 14
#

John Hargreaves Ex MLA said :

Bring on the Revolution!

It’s just a t-shirt away!

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10
watto23 3:58 pm
24 Jun 14
#

Jon said :

“Why can’t we take it off those who are Australian born?”

Because we’ve signed up to the ‘Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness’. Article 5 reads in part: “If a law entails loss of nationality, such loss shall be conditional upon the person acquiring another nationality.”

We can remove Australian citizenship from a dual national without rendering that person stateless. If an Australian ONLY has Australian citizenship, what nationality do they then become?

While I agree that being granted citizenship of another country is an honour and privilege, under international law, everyone has the right to a nationality (article 15 of UDHR).

The government can cancel a passport though, such that when an Australian citizen returns the person will be detained, arrested if required and passport cancelled. I’m not sure if they do it often though, but it allows the person to travel until either the passport expires (usually 6 months before the expiry date is when countries stop letting you in) or they return to Australia. So no one will be stateless unless they choose to be, which may be a better option than facing court for crimes committed.

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11
John Hargreaves Ex M 9:22 pm
24 Jun 14
#

watto23 said :

Jon said :

“Why can’t we take it off those who are Australian born?”

Because we’ve signed up to the ‘Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness’. Article 5 reads in part: “If a law entails loss of nationality, such loss shall be conditional upon the person acquiring another nationality.”

We can remove Australian citizenship from a dual national without rendering that person stateless. If an Australian ONLY has Australian citizenship, what nationality do they then become?

While I agree that being granted citizenship of another country is an honour and privilege, under international law, everyone has the right to a nationality (article 15 of UDHR).

The government can cancel a passport though, such that when an Australian citizen returns the person will be detained, arrested if required and passport cancelled. I’m not sure if they do it often though, but it allows the person to travel until either the passport expires (usually 6 months before the expiry date is when countries stop letting you in) or they return to Australia. So no one will be stateless unless they choose to be, which may be a better option than facing court for crimes committed.

Agreed, but…. Devil’s Advocate here… Should it not be a criterium for the withdrawal of a passport, that a prma face case of broken Australian law be made? Heinous as it may be that people with dual citizenship would prefer to risk their lives for a country other than Oz, is that an actual crime? Or just something we would deplore and it would be better to name and shame?

Thoughts?

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12
John Hargreaves Ex M 9:23 pm
24 Jun 14
#

John Hargreaves Ex MLA said :

watto23 said :

Jon said :

“Why can’t we take it off those who are Australian born?”

Because we’ve signed up to the ‘Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness’. Article 5 reads in part: “If a law entails loss of nationality, such loss shall be conditional upon the person acquiring another nationality.”

We can remove Australian citizenship from a dual national without rendering that person stateless. If an Australian ONLY has Australian citizenship, what nationality do they then become?

While I agree that being granted citizenship of another country is an honour and privilege, under international law, everyone has the right to a nationality (article 15 of UDHR).

The government can cancel a passport though, such that when an Australian citizen returns the person will be detained, arrested if required and passport cancelled. I’m not sure if they do it often though, but it allows the person to travel until either the passport expires (usually 6 months before the expiry date is when countries stop letting you in) or they return to Australia. So no one will be stateless unless they choose to be, which may be a better option than facing court for crimes committed.

Agreed, but…. Devil’s Advocate here… Should it not be a criterium for the withdrawal of a passport, that a prma face case of broken Australian law be made? Heinous as it may be that people with dual citizenship would prefer to risk their lives for a country other than Oz, is that an actual crime? Or just something we would deplore and it would be better to name and shame?

Thoughts?

Meant prima facie not prma face…. Bloody auto correct!

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13
John Hargreaves Ex M 9:25 pm
24 Jun 14
#

John Hargreaves Ex MLA said :

John Hargreaves Ex MLA said :

watto23 said :

Jon said :

“Why can’t we take it off those who are Australian born?”

Because we’ve signed up to the ‘Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness’. Article 5 reads in part: “If a law entails loss of nationality, such loss shall be conditional upon the person acquiring another nationality.”

We can remove Australian citizenship from a dual national without rendering that person stateless. If an Australian ONLY has Australian citizenship, what nationality do they then become?

While I agree that being granted citizenship of another country is an honour and privilege, under international law, everyone has the right to a nationality (article 15 of UDHR).

The government can cancel a passport though, such that when an Australian citizen returns the person will be detained, arrested if required and passport cancelled. I’m not sure if they do it often though, but it allows the person to travel until either the passport expires (usually 6 months before the expiry date is when countries stop letting you in) or they return to Australia. So no one will be stateless unless they choose to be, which may be a better option than facing court for crimes committed.

Agreed, but…. Devil’s Advocate here… Should it not be a criterium for the withdrawal of a passport, that a prma face case of broken Australian law be made? Heinous as it may be that people with dual citizenship would prefer to risk their lives for a country other than Oz, is that an actual crime? Or just something we would deplore and it would be better to name and shame?

Thoughts?

Meant prima facie not prma face…. Bloody auto correct!

And meant criterion not criterium (that’s a bike race)… Sometimes I hate auto correct!

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14
Masquara 10:00 pm
24 Jun 14
#

John Hargreaves Ex MLA said :

watto23 said :

Jon said :

“Why can’t we take it off those who are Australian born?”

Because we’ve signed up to the ‘Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness’. Article 5 reads in part: “If a law entails loss of nationality, such loss shall be conditional upon the person acquiring another nationality.”

We can remove Australian citizenship from a dual national without rendering that person stateless. If an Australian ONLY has Australian citizenship, what nationality do they then become?

While I agree that being granted citizenship of another country is an honour and privilege, under international law, everyone has the right to a nationality (article 15 of UDHR).

The government can cancel a passport though, such that when an Australian citizen returns the person will be detained, arrested if required and passport cancelled. I’m not sure if they do it often though, but it allows the person to travel until either the passport expires (usually 6 months before the expiry date is when countries stop letting you in) or they return to Australia. So no one will be stateless unless they choose to be, which may be a better option than facing court for crimes committed.

Agreed, but…. Devil’s Advocate here… Should it not be a criterium for the withdrawal of a passport, that a prma face case of broken Australian law be made? Heinous as it may be that people with dual citizenship would prefer to risk their lives for a country other than Oz, is that an actual crime? Or just something we would deplore and it would be better to name and shame?

Thoughts?

If it isn’t a crime now, it bloody soon will be.

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15
John Hargreaves Ex M 10:38 am
25 Jun 14
#

Masquara said :

John Hargreaves Ex MLA said :

watto23 said :

Jon said :

“Why can’t we take it off those who are Australian born?”

Because we’ve signed up to the ‘Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness’. Article 5 reads in part: “If a law entails loss of nationality, such loss shall be conditional upon the person acquiring another nationality.”

We can remove Australian citizenship from a dual national without rendering that person stateless. If an Australian ONLY has Australian citizenship, what nationality do they then become?

While I agree that being granted citizenship of another country is an honour and privilege, under international law, everyone has the right to a nationality (article 15 of UDHR).

The government can cancel a passport though, such that when an Australian citizen returns the person will be detained, arrested if required and passport cancelled. I’m not sure if they do it often though, but it allows the person to travel until either the passport expires (usually 6 months before the expiry date is when countries stop letting you in) or they return to Australia. So no one will be stateless unless they choose to be, which may be a better option than facing court for crimes committed.

Agreed, but…. Devil’s Advocate here… Should it not be a criterium for the withdrawal of a passport, that a prma face case of broken Australian law be made? Heinous as it may be that people with dual citizenship would prefer to risk their lives for a country other than Oz, is that an actual crime? Or just something we would deplore and it would be better to name and shame?

Thoughts?

If it isn’t a crime now, it bloody soon will be.

Interesting piece in the paper today saying Julie Bishop didn’t have a problem with Australians being in the Israeli army because that was different. How does that work?

I reckon once someone serves in an army overseas they have pledged their allegiance to that cause which is not that of Australia. And generally these people are not professional soldiers, read mercenaries.

The other thing in the paper was that most of the people in overseas outfits are not dual citizens. That poses a real problem. If their citizenship is revoked, we are in contravention of a UN convention. But the real problem is a person returning home fully trained in terrorist activities who is totally pissed off because we are denying them a right. Will we be giving them cause to use those very talents against us?

I have no solution to this only a fear.

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