Navigating Nationality: The Rights to Birth Registration and Nationality in Refugee Magnet States


The rights to registration at birth and to nationality are codified in international human rights treaties. Many states have attempted to ensure children born within their borders enjoy these rights by bolstering civil registration regimes and by expanding nationality laws, which rely on birth certificates as evidence for establishing citizenship. In prosperous developing countries, which are also refugee magnet states, these efforts have served to exclude the children of refugees, asylum-seekers, and undocumented migrants from exercising the right to nationality.