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Lithuania's parliament will seek ways of allowing citizens living abroad to preserve their Lithuanian citizenship without referendum, says Parliamentary Speaker Viktoras Pranckietis.
Lithuanian passport
© DELFI / Šarūnas Mažeika

"The first thing is keeping or preserving the citizenship. It was not dual citizenship we spoke about but way of keeping it and not losing it. (...) Preserving citizenship is different from dual citizenship, this may be possible without dual citizenship but we need answers from lawyers in this respect," Pranckietis told journalists after meeting with the leader of the Lithuanian World Community at the parliament on Monday.

In his words, ways of achieving this will be discussed with all relevant institutions and the public.

"I agree that we are all born Lithuanians, this is also something we sing about, and saying that they are not our citizens would not be correct," said the parliamentary speaker.

"Ways are sought for Lithuanians living across the globe to keep their Lithuanian citizenship. There are already 11 exceptions in the law, we simply need to search for other ways, as the new parliament, the new government and possibly new specialists will come up with a solution," said the community's leader Dalia Henke.

Currently, dual citizenship is only allowed for the citizens who left Lithuania before the country regained independence in 1990 and their descendants, however, is not granted to those who emigrated during the independence period. Dual citizenship is also allowed for children who were born abroad and acquired foreign citizenship by birth, as well as those who acquired foreign citizenship by way of marriage to a foreigner.