A noncommercial collection of information about citizenship, dual citizenship and multiple citizenship

[Please refer to How to Read a Country Entry for help interpreting this material. It was produced prior to March 2001 as part of a US government report entitled Citizenship Laws of the World. The accuracy and depth of these country listings varies significantly, and some information may be incorrect. At best, this page presents only part of the story for a particular country. Additional information for this country may be available in Country Information]


CITIZENSHIP: Citizenship laws are based upon Nationality Law #17, dated January 1, 1972, and amended by Law #10, dated 1975. On December 2, 1971, all persons who were legal citizens of the separate Emirates obtained United Arab Emirate's citizenship upon the unionization of the country.

BY BIRTH: Birth within the territory of the United Arab Emirates does not automatically confer citizenship. The exception is a child born of unknown parents.

BY DESCENT: Applies to persons born on or after January 1, 1972. Child of a United Arab Emirates father, regardless of the child's country of birth. Child born out of wedlock will obtain citizenship upon being legally recognized by the father. Child of a United Arab Emirates mother and an unknown father, regardless of the child's country of birth.


A foreign woman who marries a United Arab Emirates citizen may obtain citizenship, provided the woman resides three years in the country after application for citizenship, has given up previous citizenship, and has obtained approval of the Ministry of the Interior.

A foreign husband is not eligible for citizenship.

BY NATURALIZATION: Citizenship may be acquired by various groups of persons under the following conditions: Citizens of Qatar, Oman, and Bahrain must reside for three years. Citizens of Arab descent must reside for seven years. All other persons must reside in the country for at least 30 years, 20 of those years occurring after January 1, 1972.



VOLUNTARY: Voluntary renunciation of United Arab Emirates citizenship is permitted by law. Contact the Embassy for details and required paperwork.

INVOLUNTARY: The following are grounds for involuntary loss of United Arab Emirates citizenship: Person obtains new citizenship Person joins foreign armed forces without government permission. Naturalized citizen: Citizenship was obtained through fraud. Commits crime in the country. Lives over four years outside the country. Acts against the security of the country.

ANY QUESTIONS concerning citizenship should be directed to the address below:

Embassy of the United Arab Emirates 1255 22 Street NW, Room 700 Washington, DC 20037 (PLEASE NOTE: this address may no longer be correct)

Telephone: (202) 243-2400




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