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Austria Marks Three Years of Eased Citizenship Rules for Descendants of Nazi Persecution Victims

Austria celebrated the third anniversary of its decision to ease citizenship rules for descendants of Nazi persecution victims on September 1, 2023. In September 2020, Austria took a significant step by allowing descendants of Nazi persecution victims to acquire citizenship through a simplified reporting process, acknowledging its historical responsibility.

Austria's Minister of Foreign Affairs, Alexander Schallenberg, noted the positive impact of this change, stating that a substantial number of descendants have acquired Austrian citizenship since the rules were eased. He emphasized that the number of applications continues to rise, underscoring the trust that descendants place in the country.

Minister Schallenberg stated, "The number of new Austrians continues to rise month by month. This is a strong sign of their trust in Austria. The new citizens enrich our society and contribute to the fact that the principle 'never forget' becomes 'never again.'"

He also highlighted Austria's ongoing commitment to ensuring that descendants of Nazi persecution victims feel connected to the country, emphasizing that this gesture is supported by the entire federal government. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs is dedicated to providing professional and sensitive support to beneficiaries worldwide.

Since Austria eased citizenship rules for descendants of Nazi persecution victims, more than 31,000 people have applied for citizenship, according to the Federal Ministry for European and International Affairs of Austria. Over the past three years, Austria has welcomed over 23,000 new citizens, often serving as the first official contact with the country for these individuals.

The Ministry revealed that Austria's missions abroad receive approximately 400 new citizenship inquiries each month. To apply for Austrian citizenship, descendants of Nazi persecution victims must provide evidence demonstrating their eligibility. This includes proof of the persecution victim's center of life in Austria and personal documents, as well as documents related to their family members.


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