Lithuanian parlt steps up preparations for dual citizenship referendum

  • 2022-06-06
  • BNS/TBT Staff

VILNIUS – The Board of the Lithuanian Seimas has decided to set up a working group to prepare for the referendum on the legalization of multiple citizenships.

"The goal is to prepare for the referendum, to work out the wording and to draw up an action plan in preparation for the referendum scheduled for 2024," Speaker of the Lithuanian Seimas Viktorija Cmilyte-Nielsen said at a Board meeting last week.

The Board has already asked the parliamentary groups to delegate their members to the working group.

The Commission of the Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania and the Lithuanian World Community urged the parliament to set up such a group and start preparations for the referendum. Its chair Dalia Asanaviciute has repeatedly stressed that the remaining timeframe for the organization the citizenship referendum is getting shorter and shorter, adding that it's necessary to do so immediately to prepare for the referendum well.

Lithuanian plans to hold a referendum on a constitutional amendment to introduce multiple citizenships together with the presidential election in 2024.

The country already held a similar referendum in May, 2019 together with the presidential election but the bid to amend Article 12 of the country's Constitution failed.

Under the existing law, emigrants who left Lithuania after it restored independence on March 11, 1990 are currently not allowed to hold dual citizenship, with some exceptions.

The Constitutional Court has clarified that only a referendum to amend the Constitution can open the possibility for Lithuanian citizens who acquired citizenship of other countries after independence to have dual citizenship.