Norway: Children denied citizenship

During 2007, more than 1.500 children with foreign parents have been turned down when they have applied for Norwegian citizenship, despite having been born and having grown up in Norway.

The Nabi children were born in Norway, but do not qualify for Norwegian citizenship.

The reason is that their parents may have misunderstood or lied about their identities when they arrived in Norway, writes daily newspaper Aftenposten.

To qualify for Norwegian citizenship, the applicant has to document his or her identity. This rule applies to children as well as adults. If one or both of the parents have an undocumented identity, this gives an uncertain identity status to their children as well.

Iraqi, Afghan and Somali children are most effected by the regulations. Since 2007, 1000 Iraqi, 350 Somali and 200 Afghan children have had their applications turned down.

The Immigration Directorate (UDI) accept that this is a problem and has proposed that the authorities change the law, in order to avoid Norway breaking the UN convention on children's rights.

"We are looking into the issue and considering it along with other possible adjustments to the Citizenship law," says Ingrid DÃ¥snes, a senior advisor at the Ministry of Labour and Social Inclusion.

Source: Aftenposten (English)

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