Citizenship delays for children of immigrants

Citizenship delays for children of immigrants

Many second-generation immigrant children born in Greece or who have finished school or university in the country, have been waiting over five years to acquire citizenship. These delays are mainly in Attica and Central Macedonia, mostly due to understaffing.

Interior Ministry data show 116,500 citizenship applications were submitted between September 1, 2015 and March 31, 2022, with 18,882 still pending, of which 10,674 concern children and young people who have attended a Greek school or university. The delays are impeding them from continuing their studies or working abroad. 

Foreign nationals’ children born in Greece have the right to citizenship after enrolling in the first grade and if one of the parents has completed five years of continuous legal residence in Greece. Moreover, minors residing permanently and legally acquire the right to citizenship by completing nine years of primary and secondary school or six grades of secondary school.

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