4 Jul 2018 18:48

Russian Interior Ministry drafts bills facilitating acquisition of Russian citizenship

MOSCOW. July 4 (Interfax) - The Russian Interior Ministry's main department for migration issues has drafted two bills that would facilitate the acquisition of Russian citizenship, the department's head, Olga Kirillova, said.

"Today, the Interior Ministry issued a draft bill aimed at regulating the legal status of quite a large group of people who have been outside the legal framework for a long time. I am referring to those who came [to Russia] after July 2002, violated the established period of stay in the country [of 90 days], and have been paying for committing an administrative offense for years," Kirillova said during a press conference on Wednesday.

The document applies to stateless persons who were convicted in Russia and have nowhere to go after being released, she said.

"People can apply to our branches and obtain an identification document. It will serve as the grounds to acquire citizenship," Kirillova said.

Another bill, aimed at simplifying the procedure of granting citizenship to participants in the state program for the voluntarily resettlement of compatriots, has been drafted, she said.

"The bill has a definition of 'compatriot.' It includes a large group: [program] participants who have [Russian] roots, are descendants of Russians, have relatives who lived here earlier. It's time to give a clear definition of 'compatriot,'" the department's deputy head, Valentina Kazakova, said.

The department is trying to fix problems by simplifying the procedure of acquiring citizenship, she said. The bill has already been submitted to the government.