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Home > Main Library > Law and Constitution > Civil and political issues > Nationality, citizenship and immigration > Laws, decrees, bills and regulations relating to nationality, citizenship and immigration (commentary)

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Laws, decrees, bills and regulations relating to nationality, citizenship and immigration (commentary)

Websites/Multiple Documents

Title: The rights of non-citizens (set of 5 reports)
Date of publication: May 2003
Description/subject: A set of 5 reports by David Weissbrodt to the UN Sub-Commission - Link to an OBL section.
Author/creator: David Weissbrodt
Language: English
Source/publisher: UN Sub-Commission via Online Burma/Myanmar Library
Format/size: pdf
Date of entry/update: 24 August 2012

Date of publication: 1961
Description/subject: Text and commentary: 1. The Foreigners Act, 1864... 2. The Registration of Foreigners Act, 1940... 3. The Registration of Foreigners Rules, 1948... 4. Exemptions under the said Act... 5. The Burma Passport Act, 1920... 6. The Burma Passport Rules, 1948... 7. The Burma Extradition Act, 1903... 8. The Burma Immigration ( Emergency Provisions) Act, 1947... 9. The Burma Immigration (Detention) Rules, 1951... 10. The Transfer of Immoveable Property (Restriction) Act, 1947... 11. The Transfer of Immoveable Property ( Restriction) Rules, 1956... 12. The Union Citizenship Act, 1948... 13. The Union Citizenship Regulations, 1949... 14. The Union Citizenship (Election) Act, 1948... 15. The Union Citizenship Election Rules, 1948.... 16. Appendix I - Forms... 17. Appendix II-Burma Independence Act, 1947...
Author/creator: S. L. VERMA, B. A., B. L.,
Language: English, Burmese (ျမန္မာဘာသာ)
Source/publisher: RISHI RAJ VERMA
Format/size: pdf (6.4MB)
Date of entry/update: 18 July 2012

Individual Documents

Title: Myanmar: UN rights experts express alarm at adoption of first of four ‘protection of race and religion’ bills
Date of publication: 27 May 2015
Description/subject: GENEVA (27 May 2015) – "A group of United Nations human rights experts today expressed alarm at the enactment of the Population Control Healthcare Bill in Myanmar, the first of four in a package of bills that seek to ‘protect race and religion’. The bills are highly discriminatory against ethnic and religious minorities as well as against women. “These bills risk deepening discrimination against minorities and setting back women’s rights in Myanmar,” said the UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Myanmar, Yanghee Lee. “At a time when thousands of Rohingya are already fleeing the country by boat, this sends precisely the wrong signal to these communities.” On Saturday, State media reported that the President of Myanmar had signed the Population Control Healthcare Bill. While the stated objectives of the Bill are to improve living standards, alleviate poverty, ensure quality healthcare and develop maternal and child health, its provisions are extremely vague and lack any protection against discrimination, the independent experts noted. Under the newly adopted law, certain areas can be designated for special health care measures, including birth spacing. “Any coercive requirement for birth spacing with the aim to ‘organise’ family planning would constitute a disproportionate interference in the sexual and reproductive health and rights of women and could amount to a violation of women’s human rights,” said the UN Special Rapporteur on the right to health, Dainius Pûras, noting that the Bill allows township groups to ‘organise’ married couples to practice 36-month birth spacing between pregnancies. “Women should be able to choose freely and responsibly the number and spacing of their children.”..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: United Nations
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 29 May 2015

Title: New Religious Legislation in Myanmar
Date of publication: 13 February 2015
Description/subject: "Since Myanmar’s opening in 2011, the country has seen a rise in Burman-Buddhist nationalism. Monk-led groups such as ‘969’ and the Organization for Protection of Race and Religion (‘MaBaTha’) and their messages of religious chauvinism enjoy strong popular support. Islam and its followers are particular targets. In addition to sporadic outbreaks of mob violence, this nationalist sentiment has expressed itself in calls for laws to promote and protect Buddhism. This paper provides an overview of the current status of this draft legislation. It looks at origins of the bills currently before the legislature, a summary of their key provisions, the likely next steps and their political implications. It also discusses the recent moves to disenfranchise over a million Temporary Registration Card holders – most of whom are Muslim, and many of whom are in Rakhine State..."
Author/creator: Richard Horsey
Language: English
Source/publisher: Conflict Prevention and Peace Forum
Format/size: pdf (246K)
Date of entry/update: 21 February 2015

Title: Laws enforce discrimination in Myanmar
Date of publication: 18 March 2014
Description/subject: "A special commission in Myanmar is now drafting legislation that if passed would effectively limit the rights of certain minority groups. At the request of the speaker of the parliament, President Thein Sein earlier this month formed a commission charged with drafting legislation on two laws: one concerning restricting religious conversions and another on controlling population growth. Although the official notification creating the commission does not mention religion, both laws are directed against the country's minority Muslim community. The first will severely limit the conversion of Buddhist women to Islam and the second will restrict Muslim families to no more than two children. A wide spectrum of Burmese society will be questioned "in a transparent manner" by the commission, while any proposed legislation should be in conformity with the constitution, diverse beliefs, national unity, and Myanmar culture, according to the notification. Regulations of other countries will also be examined in the process, the notification said..."
Author/creator: David I Steinberg
Language: English
Source/publisher: "Asia Times Online"
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 26 May 2014

Title: Defining Myanmar’s “Rohingya Problem”
Date of publication: 23 July 2013
Description/subject: "...The Rohingya problem has been referred to and described in different ways, and certainly it is more than a matter of nationality and discrimination, statelessness and displacement, and the Responsibility to Protect. Yet the initial two areas have assumed particular factual and legal significance over the past three decades, as persecution of the Rohingya within Myanmar and its effects regionally have continued unabated. The third area—not unrelated to the others—should assume equal importance and attention, but thus far it has not. All three issues are progressive in their application to the Rohingya: persecutory discrimination and statelessness includes and leads to forcible displacement, which combined constitute crimes against humanity and ethnic cleansing and implicate the Responsibility to Protect. Primary responsibility rests with the Myanmar government to protect those whose right to a nationality the country has long denied, but its regional neighbors have legal and humanitarian obligations of their own vis-à-vis the Rohingya, as does the international community. The Rohingya problem begins at home—and could well end there with enough political will. Failing that, as has been the case since June 2012 if not decades, regional countries and the wider world should act to address the displacement and statelessness, and to stop the violence and violations."
Author/creator: Benjamin Zawacki
Language: English
Source/publisher: American University Washington College of Law's Human Rights Brief,Volume 20 Issue 3, Spring 2013
Format/size: pdf (516K-OBL version; 580K-original)
Alternate URLs: http://www.burmalibrary.org/docs15/Defining_Myanmar%27s_Rohingya_Problem-red.pdf
Date of entry/update: 24 July 2013

Title: Myanmar - The Rohingya Minority: Fundamental Rights Denied
Date of publication: 19 May 2004
Description/subject: "The Muslim ethnic minority, generally known as the Rohingyas, who live in northern Rakhine State, western Myanmar, continue to suffer from several forms of restrictions and human rights violations. The Rohingyas' freedom of movement is severely restricted and the vast majority of them have effectively been denied Myanmar citizenship. They are also subjected to various forms of extortion and arbitrary taxation; land confiscation; forced eviction and house destruction; and financial restrictions on marriage. Rohingyas continue to be used as forced labourers on roads and at military camps, although the amount of forced labour in northern Rakhine State has decreased over the last decade. These practices, in addition to violating other basic human rights of the Rohingyas, are discriminatory towards the Rohingya population as they do not appear to be imposed in the same manner and at the same level on other ethnic nationalities in Rakhine State, or in the country as a whole. These restrictions and abuses, and the general discrimination against them, also amount to violations of the right to an adequate standard of living for many Rohingyas. As a consequence tens of thousands have fled to neighbouring Bangladesh and other countries. This report is based on almost 50 testimonies taken from Rohingyas which were made available to Amnesty International during the last year. These interviews were conducted in private and in confidence in accordance with the organization's general terms of reference for primary research. Information from other reliable and credible sources is also used to corroborate these testimonies. In order to protect the safety of those interviewed, all details which could identify individuals have been deleted, but information obtained from public sources is cited where appropriate. Myanmar is not state party to most international human rights treaties. Amnesty International has consistently urged the State Peace and Development Council (SPDC, Myanmar's government) to accede to these treaties. However, the fact that the SPDC has not done so does not release it from its obligation to respect fundamental human rights which, being provided for under customary international law, are binding on all states..."
Language: English and French
Source/publisher: Amnesty International (ASA 16/005/2004)
Format/size: pdf
Alternate URLs: http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/asset/ASA16/005/2004/en/9e8bb8db-d5d5-11dd-bb24-1fb85fe8fa05/asa1...
Date of entry/update: 20 May 2004

Title: Malaysia/Burma: Living in Limbo
Date of publication: July 2000
Description/subject: Burmese Rohingyas in Malaysia. Contains a good discussion of the Rohingyas' de facto statelessness under the 1982 Citizenship Law as well as background material on the Rohingyas' situation in Burma.."Burmese authorities bear responsibility for the Rohingya's flight. Burma's treatment of the Rohingya is addressed in the background section of the report, and the report offers specific recommendations to the Burmese government. The focus of this report, however, is on what happens to Rohingya when they reach Malaysia. There, they are not treated as refugees fleeing persecution who should be afforded protection, but as aliens subject to detention or deportation in violation of Malaysia's international human rights obligations..."
Language: English
Source/publisher: Human Rights Watch
Format/size: html
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003

Title: GA 1997 (52nd Session): Report by the Special Rapporteur on Myanmar
Date of publication: 16 October 1997
Description/subject: General Assembly, Fifty-second session. The Secretary-General has the honour to transmit to the members of the General Assembly the interim report on the situation of human rights in Myanmar, prepared by Mr. Rajsoomer Lallah, Special Rapporteur of the Commission on Human Rights, in accordance with General Assembly resolution 51/117 of 12 December 1996 and Economic and Social Council decision 1997/272 of 22 July 1997. Good section on citizenship and citizenship legislation (paras 119-142), mainly relating to the Rohingyas, a Muslim group in Rakhine (Arakan) state; statelessness and the conformity of the different forms of citizenship [in Burma] with international norms. Also, the rights pertaining to democratic governance, the right to form and join trade unions, forced labour, violations against ethnic minorities, including violations of civil rights.
Author/creator: Mr. Rajsoomer Lallah
Language: English
Source/publisher: United Nations (A/52/484)
Alternate URLs: http://ap.ohchr.org/documents/alldocs.aspx?doc_id=5280
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003

Title: GA 1996: Report by the Special Rapporteur on Myanmar
Date of publication: 08 November 1996
Description/subject: General Assembly, Fifty-first session. The Secretary-General has the honour to transmit to the members of the General Assembly the interim report on the situation of human rights in Myanmar, prepared by Judge Rajsoomer Lallah, Special Rapporteur of the Commission on Human Rights, in accordance with Commission resolution 1996/80 of 23 April 1996.
Author/creator: Mr. Rajsoomer Lallah
Language: English
Source/publisher: United Nations (A/51/466)
Format/size: pdf (94K), html
Alternate URLs: http://ap.ohchr.org/documents/alldocs.aspx?doc_id=5240
Date of entry/update: 22 November 2010

Title: CHR 1993: Report by the Special Rapporteur on Myanmar
Date of publication: 17 February 1993
Author/creator: Mr. Yozo Yokota
Language: English
Source/publisher: United Nations (E/CN.4/1993/37)
Format/size: html
Alternate URLs: http://ap.ohchr.org/documents/alldocs.aspx?doc_id=60
Date of entry/update: 03 June 2003

Title: Gen. Ne Win's Speech on the 1982 Citizenship Act
Date of publication: 09 October 1982
Description/subject: Meeting held in the Central Meeting Hall, President House, Ahlone Road, 8 October 1982. Translation of the speech by General Ne Win provided in The Working People’s Daily, 9 October 1982
Language: English
Source/publisher: "The Working People's Daily"
Format/size: pdf (96K)
Date of entry/update: 21 February 2009