Russia's Dual-Citizens Face New Rights Restriction

Since August, Russian citizens who have a second passport or a permanent residency permit abroad have been required to disclose details of their situation to the Federal Migration Service upon first re-entering Russia.

Holders of more than one passport could be banned from working as notaries in Russia, according to a draft law published by the Justice Ministry.

The bill marks the first proposed restriction of the rights of dual citizens' since Russia criminalized the failure to report additional state affiliations.

The ministry posted its bill on Friday on state portal Regulation.gov.ru for public discussion, which is to last until Sept. 20.

The draft contains numerous amendments to the law on public notaries, most of them unrelated to the citizenship issue. The mandatory accompanying note makes no mention of the ban.

Dual citizens comprise a "small fraction" of Russia's notaries, a member of the Moscow Notary Chamber said, as quoted by RBC news site on Monday.

Since August, Russian citizens who have a second passport or a permanent residency permit abroad have been required to disclose details of their situation to the Federal Migration Service upon first re-entering Russia.

Failure to do so could result in up to 400 hours of community service and/or fines of up to 200,000 rubles ($5,390).

The law was blasted by rights activists, who said it constituted discrimination, and claimed that it had been motivated by the Kremlin's souring relations with Western nations over war-torn Ukraine.

Holders of more than passport have been prohibited from serving as state officials in Russia since 2004.

The notary ban appears to expand on this earlier ban because notaries, while formally considered private-sector professionals, execute certain public-sector functions, RBC said.

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