Intelligence and Security Committee to review citizenship cessation powers
THE Parliamentary Joint Committee on Intelligence and Security (PJCIS) has commenced an inquiry into the operation, effectiveness and implications of Subdivision C of Division 3 of Part 2 of the Australian Citizenship Act 2007 (Citizenship Act), which provides for citizenship cessation determinations.
The PJCIS is undertaking this review three years after amendments were made to the Citizenship Act in 2020 that established the current citizenship cessation regime.
Subdivision C of Division 3 of Part 2 of the Citizenship Act empowers the Minister for Home Affairs to make a determination ceasing the citizenship of an Australian for certain conduct, or following conviction for certain serious offences, relating to matters such as terrorism, treason, espionage and foreign incursion. The Subdivision sets out public interest considerations to which the Minister must have regard, and procedural requirements that must be followed, in making any determinations to cease a person’s citizenship. A person’s Australian citizenship may not be ceased if as a result the person would not be a citizen or national of any country.
Peter Khalil MP, Chair of the PJCIS, said, “This review will provide a valuable opportunity to consider the current security environment and the use by the Australian Government of its citizenship cessation powers. Three years into its operation, the review is an opportunity for the Committee to assure itself that Australia’s citizenship cessation regime is legally robust, fair and proportionate.
“The committee will also be interested in discussing the status of these provisions following consideration by the High Court since they were enacted, notably in the 2022 Alexander case," Mr Khalil added.
The committee has requested submissions to the inquiry by Thursday, February 8, 2024.
Further information on the inquiry can be obtained from the Committee’s website.