Denmark Passes Law to Withdraw Jihadists’ Citizenship Without Court Order

Europe

At least 150 people are estimated to have left Denmark for the Middle East to join the jihadist cause in recent years. Dozens of them are believed to linger on in the region, despite the effective crackdown on Daesh*.

Denmark’s immigration minister now has the right to revoke the passports of Danes who join foreign militant groups, and he only needs to inform the terrorists about the decision via the internet, the Danish newspaper Extra Bladet reported.

The law primarily targets individuals who have joined Daesh in Syria and Iraq and provides an opportunity for Immigration Minister Mattias Tesfaye to strip so-called “foreign fighters” of their citizenship without trial, while they still are in the conflict zone.

Jihadists stripped of their Danish passports will be given a four-week window to appeal the decision. However, due to a number of objections, a clause has been added that enables dispensation if the four-week deadline cannot be met.

“It will be viewed as being that if you can’t appeal on time, you will be able to exceed the four-week deadline and it will ultimately be a judge that decides whether it was out of your control to appeal by the deadline”, Tesfaye said.

The bill was supported by all right-wing parties representing the so-called “blue bloc”, as well as the governing Social Democrats. By contrast, junior left-of-centre parties, such as the Social Liberals, the Red-Green Alliance and The Alternative voted against it.

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