Biden Admin Warns US Dual Citizens In Ukraine They May Not Be Able To Leave The Country

(Photo by Ukrainian Presidential Press Office via Getty Images)

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Jake Smith Contributor
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The Biden administration is warning U.S. dual citizens in Ukraine that they can no longer leave the country amid Kyiv’s new mobilization rules.

The rule went into effect at the beginning of June and barred men of conscription age from leaving the country, which they were previously allowed to do if they could show that they had permanent residence overseas, according to Politico. The rule applies to anyone with Ukrainian citizenship, including U.S. citizens with residence inside the states, prompting the U.S. Embassy in Ukraine to issue a warning on Tuesday. (RELATED: White House Reportedly Worried About Russia’s Sudden Momentum Months After Biden Declared Putin ‘Already Lost’ War)

“After this change, U.S.-Ukrainian dual citizens, including those who live in the United States, may no longer be able to depart the country,” the Embassy said. “Ukrainian law does not recognize dual citizenship. U.S.-Ukrainian dual citizens are therefore treated solely as Ukrainian citizens while in Ukraine and are subject to the rights and obligations of Ukrainian citizens.”

(Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

WASHINGTON, DC – DECEMBER 12: Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky (L) and U.S. President Joe Biden hold a news conference in the Indian Treaty Room of the Eisenhower Executive Office Building on December 12, 2023 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

The Embassy noted that it had “limited” ability to influence the new law and encouraged U.S. citizens located in Ukraine to “shelter in place and obey all local orders.”

“We strongly recommend against all travel to Ukraine by U.S. citizen males aged 18 to 60 who also have Ukrainian citizenship or a claim to Ukrainian citizenship and who do not wish to stay in Ukraine indefinitely,” the Embassy said. “There is an extremely high risk you will not be allowed to depart, even with a U.S. passport.”

Ukrainian State Border Guard Service spokesman Andriy Demchenko confirmed to Politico that the country treats Ukrainian citizens with dual citizenship as Ukrainians only, who need to serve the goal of defending against Russia. Ukraine has historically required passport holders to reject their other citizenships, according to Politico.

“For example, at the border, we have repeatedly discovered male citizens of Ukraine who, at passport control, pretended to be foreigners,” Demchenko told POLITICO.

Ukraine’s new mobilization law is part of a broader effort to address the country’s military problems, including a shortage of troops and advanced weaponry, in the face of a resurged operational Russian military. Russian forces have made slow and small gains in eastern Ukraine in recent months, exhausting Ukrainian forces and forcing them to retreat further west.

The Biden administration has been vocally supportive of Ukraine’s war effort against Russia and has provided over $175 billion in military aid since the conflict began in 2022. Behind closed doors, however, the Biden administration is now reportedly concerned that Russia may turn the tide of the war.

Defense experts and former U.S. officials previously told the Daily Caller News Foundation that Ukraine had little chance of securing a military victory against Russia, even with Western aid.

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