Dual citizens of the Netherlands who join a terrorist organization can now lose their Dutch passports after a landmark decision Tuesday.
Authorities can suspend citizenship without any court proceedings if a person is considered a threat to national security. The law passed in the Dutch parliament Tuesday, after it was introduced following the Nov. 13 terrorist attacks in Paris.
“When they return to the Netherlands, these jihadists may pose an immediate threat to national security,” Dutch government officials said in a statement after passing the law. “In such a case, a rapid response is needed to avoid these people returning to the Netherlands.”
The person has four weeks to appeal a decision once the citizenship is revoked. People under the age of 16 are excluded from the law.
Australia became one of the first countries to pass similar legislation last December. The problem many countries face is that homegrown terrorists without a second passport can’t become stateless, which protects them from deportations.
The only way for U.S. authorities to deport American terrorists is by proving they were radicalized before they became naturalized citizens. (RELATED: Here’s What Congress Needs To Do To Deport Terrorists)
“If you can back up their activities on behalf of the terrorist organization prior to when they naturalized, basically what you’re showing them is that when they naturalized they weren’t serious about it,” Dan Cadman, a retired Immigrations Customs Enforcement officer, told The Daily Caller News Foundation last December. “If attachment to terrorism, whether it’s jihad or whatever, proceeds naturalization, then you can take their naturalization from them.”
The easiest way for Congress to follow the examples of Australia and the Netherlands would be to include terrorism activities under the net of treason.
“It is entirely feasible but Congress would have to act,” Cadman told TheDCNF. “If they say that engaging in an act of terror by an organization that considers us an enemy is treason, then they don’t have to back it up prior to naturalization.”
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