Paris attacks: Hollande drops plans to strip nationality

A person cries as she stands at a makeshift memorial for a tribute to the victims of a series of deadly attacks in Paris, in front of the Casa Nostra restaurant in Paris on November 13, 2015

French President Francois Hollande has dropped plans to change the constitution to strip militants convicted of terror attacks of their French nationality.

“A compromise appears out of reach,” Mr Hollande said after the two houses of parliament failed to agree the reforms.

The proposal followed November’s Paris attacks which killed 130 people.

But it ran into huge opposition and led to Justice Minister Christiane Taubira resigning in February.


Two-tier system

France’s president outlined the changes in the aftermath of the gun and bomb attacks by Islamist militants who targeted a concert hall, a major stadium, restaurants and bars on 13 November 2015.

The plans included emergency powers to be given a new status under the constitution – which is also being abandoned – and stripping those with dual citizenship of their French nationality if they were convicted of terrorist offences.

Sole French nationals were excluded from the proposal. Under international law, governments cannot make citizens stateless.

The lower house removed the reference to dual nationality when it approved the bill, even though opponents pointed out that the proposal would create a two-tier system – it could only be applied to dual-nationality French citizens.

The upper house, the Senate, restored the original wording that had sparked the initial debate.

Constitutional changes in France need the approval of three-fifths of the combined houses of parliament.

France has been under a state of emergency since 14 November. It is currently due to expire on 26 May.

tweet in FrenchImage copyrightChristiane Taubira
Image caption“Sometimes staying on is resisting, sometimes resisting means leaving,” Christiane Taubira said when she quit

Analysis: Lucy Williamson, BBC News, Paris

It’s a brave leader who sets out to change France’s constitution. The nation likes to date much of its identity from the revolution that created it.

Changing it would be achievement enough for a president in the flush of a political honeymoon. For President Hollande and his deeply divided Socialist Party, it’s proved a step too far.

Mr Hollande’s tough response to the November attacks brought him a brief uptick in approval. He and his prime minister have been pushing back against the left-wing of his party, in a bid to show he can deliver leadership and change.

With fractures running through both the Socialist Party and the centre-right opposition, and many French voters complaining of stasis at the heart of their political establishment, this is one defeat he could do without.

One battle too many for beleaguered Hollande

The UN Declaration on Human Rights says that if you strip a mono-national of his nationality, then he or she become nation-less.

Adopted on 10 December 1948, following a vote in which 48 nations voted in favour, none against, and eight abstained (the Soviet Union, the Soviet Republics of Ukraine and Belarus, Yugoslavia, Poland, South Africa, Czechoslovakia, and Saudi Arabia).

Contains 30 Articles designed to act as “a common standard of achievement for all peoples and all nations”,

Article 15:

(1) Everyone has the right to a nationality

(2) No-one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his nationality nor denied the right to change his nationality.


[Source:- BBC]