Past Publications

November 12, 2014

Citizenship in Greece: Impossible Citizenship

Christos Iliadis on the difficulties faced by second-generation migrants

Iliadis describes the recent debate over citizenship in Greece. A new code, launched in 2010 by the center-left government, introduced citizenship not only as part of state sovereignty but also as a right for those meeting certain criteria (such as birth to parents legally staying in the country and attending Greek schools for at least six years). By early 2013, key provisions of the law had been ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court on the grounds of protecting Greek “national community.”

PDF

Greece has recently seen intense internal debate over “second-generation” migrants and their right to citizenship. The country’s citizenship code, launched in 2010 by the center-left government, introduced citizenship not only as part of state sovereignty but also as a right for those meeting certain criteria. However, in early 2013, key provisions of the law were ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court on the grounds that the Greek “national community” should be protected from losing its character. As a result of this ruling, hundreds of thousands of children of migrant origin do not today have a right to Greek citizenship. The naturalization process will, moreover, remain extremely difficult and expensive for them when they become adults. This article argues for a new politics of citizenship that promotes citizenship participation, approaching citizenship as a practice of freedom and not only as a legal relation defined by the state.

Author/s

Bibliographic data

New Faces Conference Paper, 2014, 8pp.

Share