This consultation has come about because of a decision by the Australian government to use Australian citizenship as a weapon against Australian Jihadists who support the so-called “Islamic State (ISIS)”.
Although the announced policy has been broadened to cover terrorist acts in the Australian Citizenship Amendment (Allegiance to Australia) Bill 2015, there is no doubt that this policy approach would not be pursued if it were not for the existence of ISIS.
Australian citizenship has been an important and unifying symbol of national identity since its commencement in 1949. Australian citizenship policy and law have developed in accordance with the evolution of Australian society since that time and its absorption of over 7 million migrants into a strong multicultural community.
The Australian government should not allow a transient Middle Eastern extremist group to define the meaning and certainty of Australian citizenship. History will not smile on those who do so.
Hughes, Peter (2015). Submission to national consultation on Australian citizenship.
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