Last Updated: Thursday, 27 November 2014, 13:39 GMT

Austria: Whether a person with Austrian citizenship loses that citizenship by serving in another country's armed services (Jan. 2004 - Dec. 2004)

Publisher Canada: Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada
Author Research Directorate, Immigration and Refugee Board, Canada
Publication Date 13 December 2004
Citation / Document Symbol AUT43238.E
Reference 2
Cite as Canada: Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada, Austria: Whether a person with Austrian citizenship loses that citizenship by serving in another country's armed services (Jan. 2004 - Dec. 2004), 13 December 2004, AUT43238.E, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/42df609e5.html [accessed 28 November 2014]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

In its March 2001 publication Citizenship Laws of the World, the United States Office of Personnel Management Investigations Service stated that performance of "voluntary military service for a foreign country" is grounds for the involuntary loss of Austrian citizenship. The Federal Law Concerning the Austrian Nationality (Nationality Act 1985) states, in Article 32, "a national who voluntarily enters the military service of a foreign country shall lose the nationality" (Austria 30 July 1985).

A vice-consul at the Embassy of Austria in Ottawa provided the following information during a telephone interview with the Research Directorate on 10 December 2004.

The vice-consul corroborated the law as stated in Citizenship Laws of the World and the Nationality Act 1985 that stipulated the loss of Austrian citizenship for those found to have voluntarily served in a foreign country's military (10 Dec. 2004). According to the vice-consul, whether a person had dual citizenship or not, if they were over 18 years old and they voluntarily served, for instance, in a foreign country's navy, they would lose their Austrian citizenship (10 Dec. 2004). Even if a person chooses to attend a foreign navy school, which obliges them to serve a certain term of military duty upon graduation, they will be subject to the loss of their Austrian citizenship because they are considered to have been aware that by voluntarily enrolling in navy school they would then have to serve in the navy (Embassy of Austria 10 Dec. 2004). The vice-consul ended by stating that the Austrian Citizenship Act is very complex and this kind of issue is usually dealt with on a case-by-case basis by authorities in Vienna but, by and large, as long as service in a foreign military is seen as voluntary, it is a sufficient condition for the revocation of Austrian citizenship (10 Dec. 2004).

This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the Research Directorate within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim for refugee protection.

References

Austria. 30 July 1985. Federal Law Concerning the Austrian Nationality (Nationality Act 1985).

Embassy of Austria. 10 December 2004. Telephone interview with a vice-consul.

United States. March 2001. Office of Personnel Management Investigations Service. Citizenship Laws of the World. "Austria." [Accessed 10 Dec. 2004]

Copyright notice: This document is published with the permission of the copyright holder and producer Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (IRB). The original version of this document may be found on the offical website of the IRB at http://www.irb-cisr.gc.ca/en/. Documents earlier than 2003 may be found only on Refworld.

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