'Stateless' man to apply for Irish citizenship

The Immigrant Council says a man who has been declared stateless after his citizenship was revoked, is thrilled he can now apply to become Irish.

The man living in Ireland was officially declared as stateless after a row broke out over whether he was Lithuanian or from the Republic of Azerbaijan.

He is one of thousands of people left without a nationality after the break up of the former USSR.

Natig Sadygov was born in the former Soviet Union, but moved to Lithuania when he was a child and was granted citizenship there.

Lithuania later revoked his citizenship, claming he was from the Republic of Azerbaijan - a country which didn't exist when he left the USSR.

A senior solicitor with the Immigrant Council, Hilkka Becker, says without citizenship for either country, he was left without access to basic rights like social services, work or a passport.

Ms Becker said: "He has lived in Ireland since 2005, he wants to continue living here, he is settled here and is running a successful business.

"He has had a resident's permit for many years, but he still does not have a nationality and this recognition now will get him on the way to acquiring Irish nationality.

"With this then he will be a full citizen, again of a country in this case, Ireland."

Ms Becker said, without citizenship for either country, he was left without access to basic rights like social services, work or a passport.

  • Click to stay connected with more stories like this
  • Sign up here to receive news by email. Once per day, no spam.

Most Read in Ireland