Information on how a person born in Eritrea before 1991 would maintain his or her Ethiopian citizenship; on whether such a person must apply for Ethiopian citizenship, and on whether there is any discretion to refuse such an application, and if so, on what grounds [ETH21416.E]

The following information was provided in a telephone interview by an official at the Ethiopian embassy in Washington, DC, on 18 September 1995.

Ethiopia does not recognize dual nationality. Individuals born in the region of Eritrea who had Ethiopian citizenship in 1991, the year of Eritrea's independence, have two options: they can keep their Ethiopian citizenship, in which case there is no change in their status; or they can seek to acquire Eritrean citizenship. In the latter case, the Eritrean must formally renounce his or her Ethiopian citizenship and/or return any passport issued to him or her upon receiving Eritrean citizenship.

Additional and/or corroborating information could not be found among the sources consulted by the DIRB. For general information on Eritrean nationality law, please consult Eritrean Nationality Proclamation No. 21/1992 attached to Response to Information Request ETH20690.E of 18 May 1995.

This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the DIRB within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim to refugee status or asylum.


Embassy of Ethiopia, Washington, DC. 18 September 1995. Telephone interview with official.