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Acquisition of Palestinian Citizenship before 1948 (Nakba), British Mandate: A Survey of Palestine: ,Volume I - Page 206. Chapter VII: Immigration: Section 3:
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Posted on October 28, 2007
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British Mandate: A Survey of Palestine
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Section 3.


47. Palestine was one of those Asiatic territories renounced by Turkey as a consequence of the Treaty of Lausanne, 1923. In the territories so renounced treaty nationalities were established in virtue of the provisions of section II of the Treaty. This Treaty entered into force on the 6th August, 1924, and treaty nationality in Palestine runs from that date.

48. Effect was given in Palestine to the nationality section of the treaty by the Palestinian Citizenship Order, 1925, which came into force on the 1st August of that year. A series of amendments followed, culminating in the promulgation of the Palestinian Citizenship Orders, 1925 to 1941, Consolidated * which was further amended in 1942**.

49. The Palestinian Citizenship Orders, 1925 to 1942, is divided into four parts.

PART I is concerned with treaty nationality, i.e, nationality following the change of sovereignty over Palestine following the war and the renunciation of the territory by Turkey. In brief it prescribes that "Turkish subjects habitually resident in the territory of Palestine upon the 1st day of August, 1925, shall become Palestinian citizens". The effect of the amendment of 1931 was that Turkish subjects who were habitually resident in Palestine on the 6th August, 1924, but ceased to be so habitually resident before the 1st August, 1925, were deemed to have become Palestinian citizens unless, before the 23rd July, 1931, they had voluntarily acquired another nationality. Further provision was made enabling persons born in Palestine of Turkish nationality, who were abroad on 6th August, 1924, to opt for Palestinian citizenship. The applications were granted provided the applicants were able to establish unbroken personal connection with Palestine and were prepared to give a definite formal assurance of their intention to return• to Palestine. The right of option expired on 24th July, 1945. The number of persons who have exercised their right of option is 465 and 87 cases are still under consideration.

PART II of the Order makes provision for persons acquiring Palestinian citizenship at birth in wedlock when the father was " Palestinian citizen at the time of the person's birth; and for
* Laws of 1944, Vol. III, page 755.
** Laws of 1942, Vol. III, page 1193.

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