Social & Economic rights

Thursday, 24 January 2019

Country Briefing on Statelessness in Serbia

The European Network on Statelessness, with Praxis being one of its members, published a country briefing on the issues significantly affecting the situation of protection against statelessness in Serbia. The briefing points to the problems related to immediate birth registration and prevention of statelessness among children born in Serbia, and provides some positive solutions concerning late birth registration.  

It is pointed out that because of inadequate regulations, children whose parents do not have documents cannot be registered in birth registry books immediately after birth. It is also stressed that children who, according to the law, should acquire citizenship automatically by birth must conduct a separate procedure for acquiring citizenship, and that in practice it is not possible to obtain citizenship by birth in Serbia after reaching the age of 18 years. On the other hand, it is stated that significant progress has been made in Serbia to facilitate access to late birth registration by prescribing a court procedure for determination of date and place of birth, thanks to which many people who had previously been unable to register in birth registry books obtained personal documents.

The briefing also contains recommendations for overcoming the identified obstacles, and states that it is necessary to amend regulations that prevent the registration of children whose parents do not possess documents. It is also stressed that it is necessary to ensure the consistent implementation of the Law on Citizenship to prevent childhood statelessness, and that the time limit for acquiring citizenship by birth should be extended in line with the UN Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness.

The briefing was published as part of the Statelessness Index,  a comparative tool that assesses how different European countries protect stateless people and what they do to prevent and reduce statelessness. 

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Praxis means action
Praxis means action
Praxis means action
Praxis means action