Cit­i­zen­ship rule to roil Aus­tralian lead­ers

Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - INTERNATIONAL -

CANBERRA, Aus­tralia — All Aus­tralian sen­a­tors would have three weeks to prove they were not for­eign na­tion­als when elected un­der an agree­ment the ma­jor po­lit­i­cal par­ties reached Mon­day to re­solve a deep­en­ing cit­i­zen­ship cri­sis that could up­end the gov­ern­ment.

Prime Min­is­ter Mal­colm Turn­bull’s con­ser­va­tive coali­tion could lose two seats in by-elec­tions next month af­ter gov­ern­ment law­maker John Alexan­der on Satur­day re­signed from Par­lia­ment be­cause he had likely in­her­ited Bri­tish cit­i­zen­ship from his English-born fa­ther.

Aus­tralia is rare if not unique in the world in ban­ning dual na­tion­als from sit­ting in Par­lia­ment.

Turn­bull’s con­ser­va­tive Lib­eral Party and the cen­ter-left op­po­si­tion La­bor Party agreed to set a Dec. 1 dead­line for sen­a­tors to pro­vide doc­u­mented ev­i­dence that they are solely Aus­tralian cit­i­zens. Aus­tralian-born law­mak­ers will have to pro­vide de­tails of their par­ents and grand­par­ents’ dates and coun­tries of birth to demon­strate that they have not in­her­ited a sec­ond na­tion­al­ity. Im­mi­grant law­mak­ers must doc­u­ment steps they have taken to re­nounce their orig­i­nal na­tion­al­i­ties.

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