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Moldovan High Court Upholds Controversial Citizenship Law

About half the opposition deputies elected to parliament have dual citizenship.
Moldova's Constitutional Court has rejected a complaint filed by the opposition and upheld a year-old law barring parliament deputies and other officials from holding dual citizenship, RFE/RL's Moldovan Service reports.

Moldova's Central Election Commission says that about half of the 41 opposition candidates who won seats in parliament in the April 5 election hold dual citizenship, mostly that of EU-member Romania.

The law says they must give up their foreign passport, or at least apply to do so, before they can take their seats in parliament, where the Communist Party holds a majority of 60 seats.

The controversial law was passed in the spring of 2008 by the Communists in the previous parliament and was criticized by the European Court for Human Rights.

It is estimated that up to 500,000 Moldovans have foreign passports, mainly Romanian and Russian.

Moldova's Communist rulers have recently stepped up their complaints against what they see as Romania's attempt to "steal their citizens" by making it easier for Moldovans of Romanian descent to obtain Romanian passports.