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Dual citizenship referendum to be held during presidential election in 2019

November 08, 2018

On October 18, the parliament of Lithuania decided to hold a referendum to applicants for dual citizenship could not obtain it anymore due to sudden changes in the interpretation of the constitution and citizenship laws.

This change in the constitution is necessitated by a large number of Lithuanians living abroad. Emigration was one of the main reasons why the population in Lithuania decreased from 3.7 million people in 1990 to 2.8 million in 2017. Many Lithuanians living abroad want to keep their Lithuanian citizenship even if they acquire citizenship of another country because of the benefits they can get from being a citizen of an EU member state. But this is currently not allowed by the constitution.

Amending the constitution would allow finalizing the Law on Citizenship of Lithuania so that it would not contradict the constitution anymore as more people restore their dual Lithuanian citizenship by descent.

For legal advice on acquiring Lithuanian citizenship by descent, please visit our Contacts page or send an email to [email protected].

P.S. Unfortunately, this referendum could not improve the situation – the number of those who took part in the voting turned out to be less than 50%, although their votes were positive. Perhaps a referendum vote in 2024 will provide an opportunity for nearly a million Lithuanians to reconnect with their homeland.

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