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Macedonia: Acquisition of Macedonian citizenship by naturalization; whether a spouse with another citizenship would be granted authorization to enter and reside in Macedonia with his/her Macedonian spouse and, if so, the procedures and possibilities to acquire Macedonian citizenship (February 2006)

Publisher Canada: Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada
Author Research Directorate, Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada, Ottawa
Publication Date 16 February 2006
Citation / Document Symbol MKD101106.E
Reference 2
Cite as Canada: Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada, Macedonia: Acquisition of Macedonian citizenship by naturalization; whether a spouse with another citizenship would be granted authorization to enter and reside in Macedonia with his/her Macedonian spouse and, if so, the procedures and possibilities to acquire Macedonian citizenship (February 2006), 16 February 2006, MKD101106.E, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/45f1477d2f.html [accessed 1 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.

Acquisition of Macedonian Citizenship by Naturalization

In a 13 December 2005 telephone interview with the Research Directorate, the minister-counsellor from the Embassy of Macedonia in Ottawa provided the following information:

In 2004, a new Citizenship of Macedonia Act was signed into law. As a result, there have been some changes to the criteria required to obtain Macedonian citizenship since the adoption of the previous Citizenship of Macedonia Act in 1992. One example of the changes introduced by the new Act is that a person must now have resided in Macedonia for a period of at least eight years in order to be eligible for naturalized citizenship, whereas previously they had to have resided in the country for at least fifteen years.

The 2004 Law for Changing and Amending the Law on Citizenship of the Republic of Macedonia replaces the 1992 version of Article 7, which deals with the acquisition of Macedonian citizenship by naturalization, with the following:

An alien who has personally submitted an application for admission into citizenship of the Republic of Macedonia may acquire citizenship of the Republic of Macedonia by naturalization, if he fulfils the following requirements:

To have reached 18 years of age;

Until the submission of the application, to have been legally and permanently living in the territory of the Republic of Macedonia for at least eight years;

To have provided an abode and a permanent source of means of subsistence in the amount that affords material and social security, under conditions determined by law;

Not to have been punished in the Republic of Macedonia and in the state of his nationality by a sentence of imprisonment with a duration of a minimum of one year, for acts which are prosecuted ex officio and which are punishable according to the regulations of the Republic of Macedonia;

There should be no criminal proceedings instigated against him in the Republic of Macedonia and in the state of his nationality;

To be proficient in the Macedonian language to the extent that he can easily communicate in the environment;

A measure of prohibition of residence in the Republic of Macedonia has not been declared;

His admission into citizenship of the Republic of Macedonia should not threaten the security and defence of the Republic of Macedonia;

To sign an oath that he will be a loyal citizen of the Republic of Macedonia and

To have a release from his former citizenship or to prove that he will obtain it if he is admitted into citizenship of the Republic of Macedonia.

The fulfillment of the requirement of paragraph 1, item 6 of this Article shall be determined by a special commission established by the Government of the Republic of Macedonia.

The requirement of paragraph 1, item 10 of this Article shall be considered fulfilled if the alien proves that he is stateless or if he proves that he will lose his citizenship according to the law of his state with the very naturalization into citizenship of the Republic of Macedonia.

Upon exception of paragraph 3 of this Article, if the foreign state does not give release or places such conditions for release from citizenship which are impossible for the alien to fulfil and at the same time, in order not to create existential or security problems to him and his family, he shall be admitted into the citizenship of the Republic of Macedonia if he makes a declaration that he renounces his foreign citizenship.

In the decision rejecting the application for acquisition of citizenship of the Republic of Macedonia by naturalisation pursuant to paragraph 1, item 8 of this Article, the body shall explain the reasons owing to which it has reached the decision, and shall thereby take into consideration the protection of the public interest (Macedonia 23 Feb. 2004).

Acquisition of Macedonian Citizenship through Marriage

According to an unofficial translation of the 3 November 1992 Law on Citizenship of the Republic of Macedonia found on the Website of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Refworld 2005, Article 9 stipulates:

An alien who has been married to a national of the Republic of Macedonia for at least three years and who until the submission of the application has been residing legally and continuously for at least one year in the territory of the Republic of Macedonia, may acquire citizenship of the Republic of Macedonia by naturalisation although he does not fulfil the requirements of Article 7 paragraph 1 items 2, 6 and [10] of this Law (Macedonia 3 Nov. 1992).

The 2004 amendment to the 1992 citizenship law added the following (unofficially translated) paragraph to Article 9:

An alien who has been married to a citizen of the Republic of Macedonia for at least eight years, and has been legally and permanently living abroad and who has a strong and effective link with the Republic of Macedonia, may acquire citizenship of the Republic of Macedonia by naturalisation, although he does not fulfil the requirements of Article 7, paragraph 1, items 2, 6 and 10 of this law (Macedonia 23 Feb. 2004).

The minister-counsellor from the Embassy of Macedonia in Ottawa added that in order to be admitted as a resident of Macedonia, the spouse of a Macedonian citizen must submit a marriage certificate and a document from the Canadian authorities confirming the validity of the marriage under Canadian law (Macedonia 13 Dec. 2005).

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. Please find below the list of additional sources consulted in researching this Information Request.

Reference

Republic of Macedonia. 13 December 2005. Embassy of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia in Ottawa. Telephone interview with the Minister-Counsellor.
_____. 23 February 2004. Law for Changing and Amending the Law on Citizenship of the Republic of Macedonia (Unofficial translation). (United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (UNHCR) Refworld 2005)
_____. 3 November 1992. Law on Citizenship of the Republic of Macedonia (Unofficial translation). (UNHCR Refworld 2005)

Additional Sources Consulted

Internet Sites, including: Amnesty International (AI), British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), Courrier des Balkans, Embassy of Macedonia in Ottawa, The Economist, European Country of Origin Information Network (ECOI), Factiva, Freedom House, The Helsinki Committee for Human Rights of Macedonia, Human Rights Watch (HRW), Institute for War and Peace Reporting (IWPR), International Crisis Group (ICG), International Helsinki Federation (IHF), Open Society Institute, Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL), United States Department of State, United States Institute for Peace, World News Connection (WNC).

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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