Govt should examine applications for dual citizenship thoroughly: expert

Jakarta (ANTARA News) - The Indonesian government should examine applications for dual citizenship thoroughly, an international law expert said.

"Although the 2006 nationality law accommodates the principles of limited dual citizenship, the time has not come for Indonesia to apply it in a complete way," Prof Hikmahanto Juwana said in a written statement released on Saturday.

The application for complete dual citizenship would allow foreign nationals, who have nothing to do with Indonesia, to hold Indonesian citizenship, he stated.

In addition, dual citizenship is also vulnerable to abuse while committing criminal offenses. It is also often used to evade tax from a country, which sets higher tariffs, he said.

Till date, Indonesian citizenship is "valuable." When it comes to abduction, Indonesian nationals have often become a target of abduction by an armed group in Southern Philippines, he noted.

"The question is whether the Indonesian government is willing to protect the holders of dual citizenship, who are not Indonesian," he said.

From the standpoint of security, dual citizenship is highly vulnerable as many government agencies in the country do not have sophisticated instruments to detect holders of dual citizenship, he said.

Even if the principles of dual citizenship are to be applied, it must be limited to problems arising from mixed marriages, he stated.

"However, there is no need to apply dual citizenship to accommodate talented Indonesians who hold foreign citizenship." (*)