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Romania turns down Kiev's accusations over granting EU citizenship en masse

The Romanian Foreign Ministry reacted to the accusations made by the Ukraine earlier this week, according to which Bucharest is granting citizenship en masse to their citizens of Romanian origin.

The Foreign Ministry said today (Thurs) in a communique that it does not conduct a policy of granting citizenship on ethnic criteria for the Romanians in Ukraine or from other neighboring countries (see Moldova).

Bucharest claims that by getting back the Romanian citizenship, the people from Ukraine or from other countries do not automatically get back a Romanian passport.

As regards the allegations over passport deliveries en masse, the ministry says that the procedures for obtaining a passport are separate from obtaining of the citizenship. Furthermore, the Ministry specifies that not all of those who are claiming back their Romanian citizenship are applying for a passport.

Earlier this week Ukraine urged Romania to stop the granting of passports for its citizens.

According to the spokesperson of the Foreign Ministry in Kiev, Oleg Voloşin, Ukraine considers that those citizens who are obtaining Romanian passports should be sanctioned.

'We are against the double citizenship. Our stance is unchanged.  We have explained to our Romanian counterparts in numerous occasions that granting passports to Ukrainian citizens from border regions is an unfriendly act against our country", Voloşin said quoted by the Russian media.

The Ukrainian official admitted that Kiev's relations with Bucharest are better than ever, going even through a 'rebirth' and the problem of the citizenship is the only problem still to be solved.

Over the recent years, Romania has been accused by several EU member countries of granting citizenship to their communities in Moldova and the Ukraine, and thus introducing immigrants on the backdoor of the European block.

According to a recent report conducted by the National Statistics Institute, in the past 20 years, over a quarter of a million Moldovans got the Romanian citizenship, thus enjoying the same rights as any other EU citizen.

The granting of citizenship for Moldovans is upsetting a great number of Romanians as well because they are competing over jobs, social benefits and university scholarships.

The balance of electoral process is also disrupted, as Moldovans or other Romanians from diaspora who got the right to vote in Romania tend to vote with populist parties who are  backing up the grating of citizenship for all Romanians abroad.

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