Birth within the territory of Greece does not automatically confer citizenship. The only exceptions are abandoned children or children of stateless parents.
GREEK CITIZENSHIP BY DESCENT:
- Child born in wedlock, of a Greek father, regardless of the child’s country of birth.
- Child born out of wedlock, of a Greek mother and an unknown or stateless father, regardless of the child’s country of birth.
GREEK CITIZENSHIP BY NATURALIZATION:
For the foreign person who is not of Greek origin, it is required in addition: a) that he is legally residing in Greece ten years in total within the last twelve years before the lodgment of the application for naturalization. For the foreign persons who do not have the citizenship of any country or for the foreign persons who have been recognized as refugees, five years of residence in Greece within the last twelve years is enough before they lodge the citizenship application. The precondition of the ten-year residence is not required for the spouse of a Greek, who is residing for at least three years in Greece and has acquired a child, as well as for the person who is born and resides permanently in Greece.
DUAL GREEK CITIZENSHIP: NOT RECOGNIZED.
Exception: Greek law does not automatically remove citizenship upon a person acquiring a foreign citizenship. When a Greek citizen acquires another nationality, they are technically a dual citizen until the Greek government has given permission for the removal of Greek citizenship.
LOSS OF GREEK CITIZENSHIP: A person may not acquire a foreign citizenship until they have received permission from the Ministry of the Interior to renounce Greek citizenship. One cannot assume Greek citizenship to be lost by default.
VOLUNTARY: Voluntary renunciation of Greek citizenship is permitted by law, after receiving permission from the Ministry of the Interior. Those who have not fulfilled required military service or have been prosecuted for a felony are not granted permission to renounce Greek citizenship. Contact Embassy for details and required paperwork.
INVOLUNTARY: The following are grounds for involuntary loss of Greek citizenship:
- Person voluntarily acquires a foreign citizenship.
- Person undertakes service with a foreign country.
- Person has committed acts contrary to the national interest of Greece.
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