Butkevicius in favor of dual citizenship

  • 2013-04-16

Algirdas Butkevicius.

VILNIUS- Lithuanian Prime Minister Algirdas Butkevicius says that he is in favor of legalizing dual citizenship, however, with clear criteria for those who could get it.

"I think the final say belongs to law experts. Personally I do not see any greater threats because the last time I was in favor of having dual citizenship. But, of course, there must be some requirements to be fulfilled before receiving it," the PM said on the national radio this morning.

Butkevicus said that during various meeting with Lithuanian communities abroad he would often hear wishes of having dual citizenship, yet, some of the members did not even speak Lithuanian. Therefore, the PM says that there should be some kind of testing for aspirants.

As reported, in a Tuesday's plenary sitting at the Seimas of Lithuania, member of the Labour Party Arturas Paulauskas will submit a draft resolution on holding a referendum on dual citizenship. A total of 36 MPs have supported the initiative with their signatures.

The draft resolution proposes having the referendum along with the presidential election in 2014.

"The Constitution basically forbids citizens of Lithuania to be citizens of other countries too, therefore, the purpose of this referendum is to amend paragraph 2 of Article 12 so that a citizen of Lithuania is allowed to hold citizenship of another state as well," Paulauskas said.

Under the existent Law on Citizenship, dual citizenship is allowed only for those who left Lithuania before 1990 and for those who were granted another country's citizenship automatically.