B1369 - British Nationality Act 1981 (Amendment) Bill 2018 (Second Reading) Watch

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DayneD89
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B1369 - British Nationality Act 1981 (Amendment) Bill 2018 (Second Reading), TSR Conservative & Unionist Party


A
BILL
TO

Amend the British Nationality Act 1981 (Amendment) Act 2018 as to ameliorate the protection of national interests and security surrounding, principally, deprivation of citizenship.




BE IT ENACTED by the Queen's Most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Commons in this present Parliament assembled, in accordance with the provisions of the Parliament Acts 1911 and 1949, and by the authority of the same, as follows:—

1 - Amendments to the British Nationality Act 1981
(1) S40(2A) shall be inserted into the British Nationality Act 1981 and read as follows: "Where the Secretary of State is satisfied that deprivation is conducive, the Secretary of State is to be required to initiate all criminal and judicial proceedings against the person, prior to the deprivation of citizenship."
(2) S40(2B) shall be inserted into the British Nationality Act 1981 and read as follows: "Where the Secretary of State is satisfied that deprivation is conducive, and the deprivation of citizenship status would result in a person obtaining ‘stateless’ status, the Secretary of State is to be required to, unless for reasons for national or international security, have tangible and reliable evidence and present such to the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, or equivalent, and the Prime Minister, prior to the deprivation of citizenship."
(3) S40(4) and S40(4A) of the British Nationality Act 1981 are hereby repealed.

2 - Citation and Commencement:
(1) This act extends to the whole of the United Kingdom.
(2) This act will come into force upon Royal Assent.
(3) This act may be cited as the British Nationality Act 1981 (Amendment) Act 2018.

Notes
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The law, specifically section 40, clause 4 of the British Nationality Act 1981, currently stands that the Secretary of State and Home Office cannot deprive an individual of their nationality when it would rendered said person ‘stateless’ - regardless of circumstances. This permits those born in the United Kingdom to go out and fight against the United Kingdom, her interests and the interests of her allies whilst retaining citizenship: citizenship which is indeed a right, but as with all rights has responsibilities - in this case, a responsibility to adhere to and support the interests of the United Kingdom.

That being said, the deprivation of citizenship is an inherently serious matter; one that ought not to be taken lightly, in lieu of the ever present threat of extremism and international terrorism, but one that is necessary.






Changes for the Second Reading
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The level of scrutiny of the deprivation of citizenship, where said action would result in the person becoming stateless, has been significantly increased. The Secretary of State must now have tangible and reliable evidence and consult the PM and Foreign Secretary prior to deprivation. At the same time, the person retains the underlying right for appeal, at all times.

As to remove ambiguity, section 40(2) is no longer affected directly.
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TheDefiniteArticle
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Hard no to anything which permits the SS to make someone stateless. If it required a vote of parliament I could settle for that.
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Jammy Duel
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The authors have listened to the feedback, just not closely enough. IIRC the general consensus was parliamentary approval, not some judicial action which is vague through omission of detail.
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CoffeeAndPolitics
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Aye.
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ns_2
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(Original post by Jammy Duel)
The authors have listened to the feedback, just not closely enough. IIRC the general consensus was parliamentary approval, not some judicial action which is vague through omission of detail.
I acknowledge and fundamentally agree that some mechanism of safeguard is inherently necessary - however, full parliamentary approval is unlikely to be appropriate in all circumstances of statelessness - especially, in matters of national security (where the vast majority of deprivations occur); furthermore, parliamentary approval may mean that people put party lines above what is right and necessary.

The likes of a cross-party committee may be more appropriate, but they would lack innate authority and simply be an additional bureaucratic burden.

However, if no other suitable safeguarding mechanisms are proposed, it seems that parliamentary approval in a highly restricted format may be necessary.
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username3796922
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(Original post by ns_2)
I acknowledge and fundamentally agree that some mechanism of safeguard is inherently necessary - however, full parliamentary approval is unlikely to be appropriate in all circumstances of statelessness - especially, in matters of national security (where the vast majority of deprivations occur); furthermore, parliamentary approval may mean that people put party lines above what is right and necessary.
Though I acknowledge this, I am simply unable to vote for a bill which allows someone to become stateless. I would consider voting for the bill if it had full parliamentary oversight, but would vote nay in its current form.
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username1751857
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Aye.

(Original post by viljo)
Though I acknowledge this, I am simply unable to vote for a bill which allows someone to become stateless. I would consider voting for the bill if it had full parliamentary oversight, but would vote nay in its current form.
If you acknowledge the fact that parliamentary oversight is not a good idea then what is holding you back from giving support to this bill?...
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username3796922
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(Original post by CoffeeGeek)
Aye.



If you acknowledge the fact that parliamentary oversight is not a good idea then what is holding you back from giving support to this bill?...
Apologies, my previous reply was rather rushed; I acknowledge that parliamentary oversight is not a good solution, but it seems to me to be the only reasonable system as yet suggested for such a mechanism to be fair. Statelessness is a major issue that needs to be addressed, with around 10 million people already stateless, and it is my belief that in circumstances where the removal of someone's citizenship would result in them becoming stateless, the safeguards built into this bill in its current form simply are not enough.
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Jammy Duel
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(Original post by ns_2)
I acknowledge and fundamentally agree that some mechanism of safeguard is inherently necessary - however, full parliamentary approval is unlikely to be appropriate in all circumstances of statelessness - especially, in matters of national security (where the vast majority of deprivations occur); furthermore, parliamentary approval may mean that people put party lines above what is right and necessary.

The likes of a cross-party committee may be more appropriate, but they would lack innate authority and simply be an additional bureaucratic burden.

However, if no other suitable safeguarding mechanisms are proposed, it seems that parliamentary approval in a highly restricted format may be necessary.
You're making out that this would be a common occurrence which one really hopes it will not be. Statelessness is an extreme measure and as such should be used rarely, the notion that partisan politics would pose a threat is absurd because voting on party lines with the government party/parties MPs voting in favour as a block would almost always guarantee passage, it doesn't matter if the opposition oppose it, the only threat to success is a backbench revolt which would suggest that it is probably a bad idea.

Further you claim that the vast majority of instances would be based on national security, but the bill grants an exception on the providing of evidence where national security is cited, ergo the safeguards aren't really there at all. On top of this the exception applies to providing evidence to people who will have at least as high a security clearance as the Home Secretary unless you are telling us that you honestly believe there are things that the Home Secretary is allowed to know but the PM isn't.
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ns_2
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(Original post by Jammy Duel)
You're making out that this would be a common occurrence which one really hopes it will not be. Statelessness is an extreme measure and as such should be used rarely, the notion that partisan politics would pose a threat is absurd because voting on party lines with the government party/parties MPs voting in favour as a block would almost always guarantee passage, it doesn't matter if the opposition oppose it, the only threat to success is a backbench revolt which would suggest that it is probably a bad idea.

Further you claim that the vast majority of instances would be based on national security, but the bill grants an exception on the providing of evidence where national security is cited, ergo the safeguards aren't really there at all. On top of this the exception applies to providing evidence to people who will have at least as high a security clearance as the Home Secretary unless you are telling us that you honestly believe there are things that the Home Secretary is allowed to know but the PM isn't.
I understand your concerns; the 'national security' exclusion is poorly worded, I must concede. The issue arises when parliament cannot be provided with the full underlying situation due to ongoing operational reasons: i.e. in scenarios where fully detailing the reasons behind deprivation of citizenship would compromise counter-terror investigations, for example.

Whilst parliamentary scrutiny may work with the vast majority, crucially, the law must go some way to make provisions for all circumstances: in circumstances where parliament cannot be consulted, there ought to still be underlying scrutiny as to ensure constant accountability.
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Jammy Duel
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(Original post by ns_2)
I understand your concerns; the 'national security' exclusion is poorly worded, I must concede. The issue arises when parliament cannot be provided with the full underlying situation due to ongoing operational reasons: i.e. in scenarios where fully detailing the reasons behind deprivation of citizenship would compromise counter-terror investigations, for example.

Whilst parliamentary scrutiny may work with the vast majority, crucially, the law must go some way to make provisions for all circumstances: in circumstances where parliament cannot be consulted, there ought to still be underlying scrutiny as to ensure constant accountability.
Private sessions are a thing you know?
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Rakas21
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Aye.

National security should come before appeals for emotion.
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Prasiortle
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(Original post by Jammy Duel)
You're making out that this would be a common occurrence which one really hopes it will not be. Statelessness is an extreme measure and as such should be used rarely, the notion that partisan politics would pose a threat is absurd because voting on party lines with the government party/parties MPs voting in favour as a block would almost always guarantee passage, it doesn't matter if the opposition oppose it, the only threat to success is a backbench revolt which would suggest that it is probably a bad idea.

Further you claim that the vast majority of instances would be based on national security, but the bill grants an exception on the providing of evidence where national security is cited, ergo the safeguards aren't really there at all. On top of this the exception applies to providing evidence to people who will have at least as high a security clearance as the Home Secretary unless you are telling us that you honestly believe there are things that the Home Secretary is allowed to know but the PM isn't.
(Original post by CoffeeGeek)
Aye.



If you acknowledge the fact that parliamentary oversight is not a good idea then what is holding you back from giving support to this bill?...
This bill is inherently contrary to Article 8(1) of the 1961 UN Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness and is therefore unlawful from the start. So unless the proposer thinks we should also renounce membership of the UN, I would suggest that any further discussion is pointless.
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Jammy Duel
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(Original post by Prasiortle)
This bill is inherently contrary to Article 8(1) of the 1961 UN Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness and is therefore unlawful from the start. So unless the proposer thinks we should also renounce membership of the UN, I would suggest that any further discussion is pointless.
You do realise that to be in the UN one is not required to follow every convention to the letter otherwise the UN wouldn't exist, if you read more closely you would also find that it is not unlawful in all cases
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ns_2
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(Original post by Prasiortle)
This bill is inherently contrary to Article 8(1) of the 1961 UN Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness and is therefore unlawful from the start. So unless the proposer thinks we should also renounce membership of the UN, I would suggest that any further discussion is pointless.
I regret to inform you that this Bill is completely in line with the United Kingdom's obligations under international law; this matter was debated fervently throughout the first reading.

On ratification of the very convention you cite, the United Kingdom made a declaration as to retain the right to make someone stateless; a notion inherently legal under Article 8(3).
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Prasiortle
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(Original post by Jammy Duel)
You do realise that to be in the UN one is not required to follow every convention to the letter otherwise the UN wouldn't exist, if you read more closely you would also find that it is not unlawful in all cases
You can't try to use Article 8(3) as a get-out clause since (a) it only applies if the state concerned made a declaration when it ratified the Convention that it was keeping certain rights to deprive persons of their nationality, and I can't find anything to indicate that the United Kingdom made such a declaration; (b) even if it did apply, it only allows deprivation of nationality notwithstanding the possibility of statelessness in cases where a person takes emoluments from another state, renounces his allegiance to the state of which he is a national, or acts in a way that is seriously prejudicial to the vital interests of the state. The bill as currently stated in the OP does not restrict deprivation of nationality to these cases.
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Jammy Duel
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(Original post by Prasiortle)
You can't try to use Article 8(3) as a get-out clause since (a) it only applies if the state concerned made a declaration when it ratified the Convention that it was keeping certain rights to deprive persons of their nationality, and I can't find anything to indicate that the United Kingdom made such a declaration; (b) even if it did apply, it only allows deprivation of nationality notwithstanding the possibility of statelessness in cases where a person takes emoluments from another state, renounces his allegiance to the state of which he is a national, or acts in a way that is seriously prejudicial to the vital interests of the state. The bill as currently stated in the OP does not restrict deprivation of nationality to these cases.
https://treaties.un.org/Pages/ViewDe...er=5&clang=_en

Yeah, we kinda did that...
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Prasiortle
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(Original post by Jammy Duel)
https://treaties.un.org/Pages/ViewDe...er=5&clang=_en

Yeah, we kinda did that...
OK, acknowledged, but you have not addressed my point in (b) that "it only allows deprivation of nationality notwithstanding the possibility of statelessness in cases where a person takes emoluments from another state, renounces his allegiance to the state of which he is a national, or acts in a way that is seriously prejudicial to the vital interests of the state. The bill as currently stated in the OP does not restrict deprivation of nationality to these cases only".
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ns_2
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(Original post by Prasiortle)
OK, acknowledged, but you have not addressed my point in (b) that "it only allows deprivation of nationality notwithstanding the possibility of statelessness in cases where a person takes emoluments from another state, renounces his allegiance to the state of which he is a national, or acts in a way that is seriously prejudicial to the vital interests of the state. The bill as currently stated in the OP does not restrict deprivation of nationality to these cases only".
Restrictions surrounding the deprivation of citizenship, in a more general sense, are established in other sections of the British Nationality Act.

This Bill seeks to amend the Act as to ensure that those, born in the UK, who severely undercut the interests of the United Kingdom, notably fighting against our country in the likes of the Islamic State, no longer possess the security and benefits of British citizenship.
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