Lithuania legalizes dual citizenship

  • 2002-09-19

The Lithuanian Parliament on Sept. 17 agreed to allow Lithuanians to have dual citizenship, the Parliament's information bureau reported.

Some 200,000 Lithuanians emigrated from the Baltic country, mostly to the United States, after Lithuania restored its independence in 1991.

The amendments to the citizenship law adopted provide for Lithuanian citizens, whose parents or grandparents are of Lithuanian origin or have Lithuanian citizenship, to retain the citizenship even after obtaining that of another country.

Those, who had Lithuanian citizenship before the 1940 Soviet occupation are also entitled to keep it.

Under current law, Lithuanians who obtained the citizenship of another state were stripped of Lithuanian citizenship.

Lithuanian MP Arminas Lydeka of the Liberal party, which initiated the amendments, said that the new law was more liberal and would help the country.

"Lithuania, with such a small population, cannot waste its citizens so easily," he said.