Forums > Social Discussion > Dual citizens - who should be responsible for them?

Login/Join to Participate

Eera
old hand
Location: In a test pit, Mackay
Member Since: 29th May 2003
Total posts: 1107
Posted:During the first few days of the Israeli bombings of Lebanon, many Australian citizens visiting relatives got caught in the crossfire. The government was widely criticised for not doing enough soon enough to get them out.

Now, here's the rub: when you apply to become an Australian citizen, it states quite clearly that if you retain your former citizenship, once you travel to that country on the old passport, whether as a tourist or a resident, you forfeit your rights to be helped out by the Australian government if things go wrong. It's there to make sure people can't just use their new citizenship as a get-out-of-jail-free card.

Travellers are also warned that if they travel anywhere on a passport *other* than that of where they are permanantly resident, they may not be able to get help from the embassy of that country. (I'm as guilty of that as anyone; I'm not going to be bothered with getting visas for the Australian passport where I can get free entry on the British one)

So, should the holders of single passports be treated preferably to new citizens in these circumstances, or in reality does the Government have a duty to everyone who resides within its borders, regardless of where they travel on what document?


There is a slight possibility that I am not actually right all of the time.

Delete Topic

Gnor
Gnor

Carpal \'Tunnel
Location: Perth
Member Since: 31st Mar 2003
Total posts: 5814
Posted:My initail reaction to people going there was
" why the hell are they going to a war zone anyways"
" Why are the sending dance groups of kids there"
" why is the government getting grief for not getting them out soon enough"

I felt more sympathy as time went on but this dual citizenship thing is news to me. I guess they think both countries should help. umm They just dont think it through
Do they have to pay at all for getting evacuated? Or is it bourne by the government?


Is it the Truth?
Is it Fair to all concerned?
Will it build Goodwill and Better Friendships?
Will it be Beneficial to all concerned?

Im in a lonely battle with the world with a fish to match the chip on my shoulder. Gnu in Binnu in a cnu

Delete

Birgit
Birgit

had her carpal tunnel surgery already thanks v much
Location: Edinburgh
Member Since: 27th Jan 2005
Total posts: 4145
Posted:While I can see that it can be really useful to have 2 passports, like when you've got parents of mixes nationalities, I don't quite get the whole dual nationality thing if you APPLY to become a citizen of another country. To me that should mean you want to be a citizen there and nowhere else shrug

So if the only reason you get into a certain country with your OTHER passport is that it's quicker and less hassle for you, you can't really expect the country to go through considerably more hassle to get you out of trouble.

Now a problem one of my friends has: she's Croatian but 2nd Generation of living in Germany. If she gives up her Croatian passport to become German, she loses rights like inheriting her family's house in Croatia. Which I find is a bit odd. Though at some point I guess Croatia will join the EU and it'll all get much easier!


"vices are like genitals - most are ugly to behold, and yet we find that our own are dear to us."
(G.W. Dahlquist)

Owner of Dragosani's left half

Delete

ado-p
ado-p

Pirate Ninja
Location: Galway/Ireland
Member Since: 13th May 2004
Total posts: 3882
Posted:I think Australia should join the EU.

Love is the law.

Delete

Birgit
Birgit

had her carpal tunnel surgery already thanks v much
Location: Edinburgh
Member Since: 27th Jan 2005
Total posts: 4145
Posted:Yeah biggrin And Canada, too.

"vices are like genitals - most are ugly to behold, and yet we find that our own are dear to us."
(G.W. Dahlquist)

Owner of Dragosani's left half

Delete

FireTom
Stargazer

Member Since: 20th Sep 2003
Total posts: 6650
Posted:Nothing wrong with multiple citizenships. Good thing. Why give up your heritage, just because moving to a different part of the same rock?

Aussie gov't has sometimes an odd relationship to it's own citizens -> Bali Nine and I lack understanding - maybe it's the "mateship" or the archaic way of life... confused

In this my opinion is that it doesn't matter who went where on what passport despite what travel warning - it's a lame excuse not to get your stuff together. Humanitarian aid should be provided, whenever possible.

Not just like: "heyas, wrong citizenship, no entry, stay and get killed!"

In Germany you can't have multiple citizenships - if you apply for the German, but you can keep yours when applying for. Once you allow foreign residents to keep their citizenship, deal with it.

Certainly I agree that Canada and Australia should join the EU - I wouldn't have to apply for residency to move there biggrin


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

Delete

Spanner
Spanner

remembers when it was all fields round here
Location: in the works... somewhere...
Member Since: 27th Feb 2003
Total posts: 2790
Posted:I think a government has a duty to everyone it has accepted responsibility for as a citizen. If it isn't intending to do so, it shouldn't accept them.

Here in the UK I often see publicity about Australia's Immigration Department recruitment drive for skilled workers. When people become permanent residents as a result of this scheme, I think it's only fair for them to expect the security which is afforded to any other Australian citizen in return.

Internationally, there are also many citizens who apply not out of convenience having forseen a situation in their adult life, but because they have as much heritage in one country as another. I know someone who has had dual citizenship since birth, simply because his father is British and his mother is South African. Similarly, I also know people who have triple citizenship because they were born in Britain to an American mother and a Norwegian father.

I don't think that bringing priorities depending on levels of citizenship into an evacuation situation would be at all helpful, but it sounds as if Australia is pulling the rug out from under their citizens' feet by the same rules frown


"I thought you are man, but
you are nice woman.

yay,

:R"

Delete

Eera
old hand
Location: In a test pit, Mackay
Member Since: 29th May 2003
Total posts: 1107
Posted:My first reaction was "hell, if I was somewhere nasty and could get out on a different document, I would."

But again, if you choose to live and work in a foreign country (there are 25,000 Australian citizens effectively permanantly living in Lebanon), should you be last in the queue for evacuation. Pays your money, makes your choice and all that.

The Australian laws state that if you apply to become a citizen of another country, you must give up your Australian citizenship, but you can become dual national through your parents (as I am), however, you are permitted to retain citizenship of another country if you apply to become Australian.


There is a slight possibility that I am not actually right all of the time.

Delete

NYC
NYC

NYC
Location: NYC, NY, USA
Member Since: 26th Aug 2001
Total posts: 9232
Posted:It seems to me, if you're a dual citizen and you're in one country you shouldn't be able to call the other country and say "get me out of here!" since you're essentially already "home".

Maybe I'm misunderstanding the situation. I know of many situations where dual citizens are working the system to have their cake and eat it too.


Well, shall we go?
Yes, let's go.
[They do not move.]

Delete

wonderloey
wonderloey

enthusiast
Location: Melbourne - home of pirates
Member Since: 21st Feb 2006
Total posts: 255
Posted:I understand that point of view.. But if the job of a government is to look after its citizens, then they surely should be looking after the interests of all its citizens, not only the ones with only one passport.

I think the dual-citizenship debate in Oz at the moment is largely based on xenophobic attitudes towards Australian-Lebanese dual citizens. The government is (yet again) stamping Arab Australians with the terrorist stamp without thought.

If the same situation was occuring in (I don't know...) the Solomon Islands for example, I don't think there would be any debate..


"You've gone from Loey the Wonder Lesbian to everyone wondering if you are a lesbian." - Shadowman

Yesterday is yesterday. If we try to recapture it, we will only lose tomorrow.

Delete

Birgit
Birgit

had her carpal tunnel surgery already thanks v much
Location: Edinburgh
Member Since: 27th Jan 2005
Total posts: 4145
Posted:I wonder if part of it might not be due to organisation... let's say you have a British and Australian passport and use the British one to get into Lebanon. Then something happens and you need out. Now since you've registered in the country under your British passport, presumably the British authorities will be trying to get you out, possibly looking for you and risking their people who're supposed to help you, while you may already have escaped with an Australian group. They can't be expected to communicate with Australia first or even to be aware that you've also got an Oz passport.

Might be a bit far-fetched though, I don't know...


"vices are like genitals - most are ugly to behold, and yet we find that our own are dear to us."
(G.W. Dahlquist)

Owner of Dragosani's left half

Delete

FireTom
Stargazer

Member Since: 20th Sep 2003
Total posts: 6650
Posted:Meaning.... a woman, mother of three, with her babies, stands at the port of Beirut. Behind her shells exploding, turning the city into rubble, fires blazing. She wants to enter the ship, to reach safe shores in Cyprus. Captain says: "She holds two passports - leave that b.behind" She breaks up in tears, walks back down the gateway, two days later she and her three children are found dead... If you'd hear this story, I guess you wouldn't be happy about it. But the captain has his orders - straight from the gov't...



The Australian gov't has miserably failed to provide means of evacuation to its citizens in Lebanon on time. However "who pays for the evac?"



Tell ya, who: the taxpayer! The average Joe. It's disgusting somehow, to even having a discussion about it in the first place.



If holding two or more passports and being in Beirut, I'd walk up to all of those ships and try to get out. Maybe I'd be "milking" two cows, hey what the.... unfair? To whom? To her, who "only" holds a Lebanese passport? What's the point?



Bad Israel is bombing innocent civilians, but it's okay to leave them behind and let them die, because they have dual citizenship? Or is it to reclaim some pennies from their pockets? From those who have supposedly just lost everything...



Frankly: This discussion is a disgrace for a western civilised country whose GDP per capita is $32.000 (no 14 of the world ranking)...

EDITED_BY: FireTom (1154336163)


the best smiles are the ones you lead to wink

Delete