Dutch government to resign over MP citizenship controversy

[JURIST] Dutch Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende [official website; Wikipedia profile] has said that the ruling coalition government in the Netherlands will resign Friday after losing the support of one of the parties making up the coalition due to the treatment of a Dutch lawmaker whose citizenship was nearly revoked. Democraten 66 (D66) [official website], a social-liberal party, pulled out of the coalition in protest after Immigration Minister Rita Verdonk [official profile] refused to resign after stripping former Dutch MP Hirsi Ali [BBC profile] of her citizenship and later restoring Ali's citizenship [JURIST report].

Ali resigned from the Dutch parliament [JURIST report] in May after Verdonk declared her 1997 naturalization invalid because she lied on her application for asylum. Verdonk, however, issued a ruling Wednesday reinstating Ali's citizenship, saying her 1992 application sufficiently identified her [press release]. Ali, well-known for her criticisms of fundamentalist Islam, has since moved to the US to take a job with a conservative think-tank. BBC News has more.

 

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