Bangladesh on Monday approved a draft law widening scope for dual citizenship, a provision currently available for Bangladeshis having nationality of the UK and the US.
“The cabinet on Monday approved the draft of a proposed citizenship law that has been framed by amalgamating two existing laws (and) widening scopes for dual citizenship,” cabinet secretary Shafiul Alam told reporters at a briefing following a meeting chaired by Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.
He said Bangladeshis staying in all the countries who have diplomatic ties with Bangladesh, except SAARC states and Myanmar, would be eligible for the dual citizenship under the proposed law.
The top bureaucrat said the law also barred dual citizenship “with countries the government has imposed a bar on by issuing gazettes and with those countries which have no diplomatic relations with Bangladesh”.
“Supreme Court judges, MPs, members of the armed forces, public services and anyone holding a constitutional post will (also) not be permitted to possess dual citizenship,” he said.
Alam said foreign nationals, married to Bangladeshis, would have to reside in Bangladesh for at least five years to qualify for citizenship while currently the period of residence was four years.
The government may also confer honorary citizenship on individuals for their contributions to Bangladesh.
“In these cases, such citizens will not be able to participate in any elections and cannot get involved with political parties. They cannot be employed for any State affairs, including as Supreme Court judges,” he said.