President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy submitted a number of bills aimed at counteracting threats to national security in the field of citizenship to the Verkhovna Rada.
The documents were drafted in pursuance of the decision of the National Security and Defense Council of February 26, 2021 "On urgent measures to combat threats to national security in the field of citizenship", enacted by Presidential Decree № 85/2021 of March 4, 2021.
In particular, a draft law “On Amendments to the Law of Ukraine “On Citizenship of Ukraine” was submitted to the Parliament, which is designed to ensure legal certainty of the state's attitude to Ukrainian citizens who have citizenship of other states.
The document updates the provisions of the legislation in the field of citizenship and clarifies the powers of state bodies involved in resolving issues of citizenship of Ukraine.
"In this way, we will resolve issues related to dual citizenship. The value of Ukrainian citizenship must grow: a Ukrainian passport must be a guarantee of free and safe movement around the world, and a Ukrainian must feel protected in any country and know that his state is guarding his rights and interests," Volodymyr Zelenskyy said.
The draft law "On Prevention and Counteraction to Threats to National Security of Ukraine in the Sphere of Citizenship" was also submitted to the Parliament. This document defines the legal and organizational basis for the functioning of the system of declaring by citizens of Ukraine the citizenship of other states or the process of acquiring or terminating citizenship of a foreign state. It also contains the legal basis for verifying the accuracy of information provided in declarations, combating the use of citizenship of another state as a tool for interfering in the internal affairs of Ukraine, encroaching on the independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity of the state.
A related bill "On Amendments to the Code of Administrative Offenses of Ukraine, the Criminal Code of Ukraine and the Criminal Procedure Code of Ukraine (on liability for violations of citizenship legislation)" was also submitted to the Parliament which proposes to establish administrative liability for late submission or failure of the subject of declaration to declare the citizenship of a foreign state, the process of acquiring or terminating the citizenship of a foreign state, etc.
This document also proposes to establish criminal liability for intentional declaration of inaccurate information about the citizenship of a foreign state.
"All politicians and officials who fill out electronic declarations under the Anticorruption Law must indicate the citizenship of other states. If a person authorized to perform the functions of the state or local self-government is also a citizen of another state, he or she must honestly inform about it - Ukrainian society has the right to know about it. A person should be held criminally liable for intentional attempts to conceal the fact of dual citizenship,” the President stressed.
In addition, the Head of State submitted to the Verkhovna Rada a bill "On Amendments to the Law of Ukraine "On the Judiciary and the Status of Judges" on Preventing and Counteracting Threats to National Security of Ukraine in the Sphere of Citizenship". This document aims to counteract the use of foreign citizenship by Ukrainian citizens as an instrument of interference in the internal affairs of Ukraine, encroachment on the independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity of the state.
"We propose to impose restrictions on the holding of positions in the judiciary by citizens of Ukraine who have acquired the citizenship of another state," said Volodymyr Zelenskyy.
The President also submitted to the Parliament a draft law "On Amendments to Article 570 of the Customs Code of Ukraine on Preventing and Counteracting Threats to National Security of Ukraine in the Sphere of Citizenship", which proposes to impose restrictions on holding positions in customs bodies by citizens of Ukraine who have acquired citizenship of a foreign state or states.
The President calls on the people's deputies of all factions and groups to support the bills submitted by him. The adoption of these documents will be the next step in the formation and improvement of the institution of citizenship of Ukraine.