Daily Bookmarks 09/23/2008


  1. Neeka, I would appreciate your two kopiyky on this issue: Paul Goble wrote a blog entry today saying that a proposed law in Russia would allow up to 8 million Ukrainian citizens to apply for Russian citizenship. (http://windowoneurasia.blogspot.com/2008/09/window-on-eurasia-moscow-can-now-offer.html) His entry cites this article from "Delo": http://delo.ua/news/87411/

  2. Goble says in the entry that it is open to those who are "former citizens of the USSR and were born on the territory of Russia." My question is about the article "and" in that sentence. In the original Russian article, it has no article, merely a comma.("Упрощенной процедурой смогут воспользоваться прежде всего бывшие граждане СССР, родившиеся на территории России.") In your view, is it open to those who were citizens of the USSR "AND/OR" born on Russian territory? If it's "or," it obviously qualifies for more people. I mean, how many of those 8 million were born on Russian soil? Not as many. It makes a big difference.
    Diakuyu za vashi uvahy!

  3. Former Soviet citizens who were born in Russia.

    And I assume that others are eligible as well - but those who were born in Russia get some kind of a preferential treatment: "прежде всего" former Soviet citizens who were born in Russia.

    And it's not just about Ukraine, of course.

    As for the 8 million figure - yes, according to the article, this is how many Ukrainian citizens were born in Russia. So what? It doesn't mean anything.

    It definitely does not mean that they are all going to line up for those Russian passports. Because what's the use of having a Russian citizenship for someone who lives in Ukraine? Are they getting some money along with their new passports? Or a new apartment? Or a piece of land in Russia? Or a chance to enjoy visa-free travel to Europe and the States, as you would if you were an Israeli citizen? Is there anything that this new citizenship offers them that they aren't getting from the Ukrainian state? Apart from the perspective of running into problems with the Ukrainian law enforcement and having their sons drafted into the Russian army? What's the practical point for the people? Can't wait for some good investigative reporting on this.

    This part of Goble's post is interesting, too:

    "But if because of these simplified procedures, more Ukrainians take Russian citizenship without giving up their Ukrainian citizenship in violation of the Ukrainian constitution and then remain in Ukraine, Moscow would likely be able to exploit them in the same way it used the presence of dual citizens of Abkhazia and South Ossetia to justify military action."

    The assumption here is that the Ukrainian law enforcement officials are not going to do anything about it, you know. Which is quite possible, no matter how wrong. But let's hope they'll get their fat asses off their chairs and figure out a way to inspire Ukrainian citizens to be more law-abiding.

  4. I've read that according to this law you are only eligible for the "simplified procedure" (упрощенная процедура) if you are willing to move to and live in a certain part (city, town, village) of the Russian Federation set by the Russian government.

  5. But hasn't Russia had a similar law for a long time already, giving FSU citizins born in Russia a privileged status when it comes to acquiring RF citizenship?

    I distinctly remember coming across similar laws years ago when I was writing my master's thesis at university. I wrote stg about the rights of the Russian minorities in the Baltic republics, which involved research into what options they had in acquiring RF citizenship. Unfortunately, I don't have the text of my thesis at hand to double check.

  6. myrthe, I think that even the "unsimplified procedure" is somewhat "simplified" for FSU citizens.