The Deprivation of Citizenship in the United Kingdom: A Brief History
In February 2014, Middlesex University and the Refugee Studies Centre organised a seminar on Deprivation of Citizenship, bringing together leading scholars, legal practitioners and investigative journalists to highlight the disturbing increase in powers and use of deprivation of citizenship in the UK. The result was a fascinating set of papers and an animated discussion (the proceedings can be viewed on YouTube). Some of the papers from the seminar (and one other paper) have now been published in a special issue of Journal of Immigration Asylum and Nationality Law which as been made open access. At a glance: In this article, I trace the legislative development of denaturalisation (deprivation of citizenship) power in the United Kingdom. Beginning with its first emergence in the feverish environment prior to World War I, I discuss how legislation has evolved in the face of perceived security threats to the state and human right norms over the last century. I turn then to discuss the revitalisation of denaturalisation power since 2002, under Labour and coalition governments. I conclude by considering the novelty of recent legislative developments and their likely consequences for UK citizenship.