x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 28 July 2017

Work begins on President's citizenship decree

Work has begun on introducing the President's decree that the children of women married to foreigners be allowed to apply for citizenship when they turn 18.

ABU DHABI // Work has begun on introducing the President's decree that the children of women married to foreigners be allowed to apply for citizenship when they turn 18.

The decree, announced by Sheikh Khalifa just before National Day, stated these children would have the same rights as the children of Emirati couples.

And while the news thrilled many Emirati mothers, it has left many guessing about how it will work.

Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed, the Minister of Presidential Affairs and Deputy Prime Minister, has decreed the establishment of a committee to put the order into law and to try to foresee its consequences.

The committee will be headed by Sheikh Mansour's deputy, Ahmed Juma Al Zaabi, and will include national security officials and those from the Ministry of Interior.

Yesterday Maj Gen Nasser Al Minhali, the assistant undersecretary for naturalisation, residency and ports affairs at the Ministry of Interior, admitted he could not answer the many questions he had been asked about the decree.

Gen Al Minhali said it was the responsibility of the Ministry of Presidential Affairs to issue the paperwork.

"People are asking about it but we told them that the decision has not yet been clarified," he said. "We are only the executive party."

osalem@thenational.ae