Posted on May 18, 2018

‘Something Special’: Denmark Seeks to Further Tighten Citizenship Law

Sputnik, May 17, 2018

A new package of amendments has been designed to tighten citizenship requirements in Denmark, Danish Radio reported.

Introducing tougher financial and legal requirements, Immigration and Integration Minister Inger Støjberg said becoming a Danish citizen was “something special” and explained that the tougher rules are intended to make Danish citizenship “something to strive for.”

“The government only wants to grant citizenship to foreigners who have been here for many years and who have clearly shown that they both can and will respect Danish society and our Danish values,” Støjberg said.

Støjberg stressed that people who have committed a serious crime in Denmark should of course automatically forfeit the right to become Danish citizens.

Other suggestions include obligating potential citizens to become more self-sufficient and not rely on any public assistance (including unemployment benefits) for at least two years.

One of the suggestions even includes a citizenship ceremony for would-be citizens, including signing a statement where they pledge to uphold the Danish Constitution.

The Danish government has been gradually tightening citizenship rules since 2015. Incidentally, this has resulted in a drop in the percentage of Muslim becoming citizens, which fell from 70 percent in 2014 to only 21 percent in 2018. In the same period Denmark has opened up regulations for dual citizenship, potentially spurring nationalization from Western countries.

“In my view, there is no doubt at all that it is much easier to integrate a Christian American than a Muslim Somali,” Støjberg said, as quoted by the Berlingske daily. “It is clear that if you come from other parts of the world, you have to exert yourself somewhat harder to, for example, learn the language,” Støjberg added.