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Wednesday,November 20,2019
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 After the revived Nationality Law was passed on May 24, it brought about many issues. It closely related with students, because it was revised to prevent someone from avoiding military duty by dropping his citizenship. The Dongguk Post explains the law and analyzes why it is a hot issue...........Ed.
  Before the Nationality Law was revised, someone with dual citizenship had to choose one nationality at seventeen, and some of them dropped their Korean nationality to avoid military duty. By abjuring, they could shirk military service as overseas Koreans. After the law was revised, a person with dual citizenship was put on the draft list. Males over eighteen can choose their nationality after doing their military service. Either doing military service or dropping Korean citizenship is the issue of dual citizenship.
  More than 1600 people with dual citizenship have renounced their Korean citizenship. About 40% of them live in Gang-nam, generally regarded as a rich district. Even 31 toddlers dropped their citizenship. This has something to do with the gulf between rich and poor. So the issue of Nationality Law will continue.
  The purpose of introducing the revision bill was to stop draft dodgers. It is closely related with the students who have to do military duty. In response to the question, "If you had dual citizenship, which nationality would you choose?" Less than half the respondents answered that they would likely choose the other nationality to avoid military duty.
  "Even though I have been discharged from the military service, I would drop Korean citizenship if I had the choice of another citizenship. This is because the military system has lots of problems. The administration has to improve military circumstances before it regulates these people," said one of the respondents.
  "Choosing one's nationality is a freedom of choice. But changing nationality for convenience isn't a good choice. This kind of action has to be exposed. I'm happy they introduced the bill to prevent it," said Yoon Chang-bae, Junior, Dept. of the Mechanical Engineering.
  After the bill was enforced in May, the Ministry of Justice barred many kind of benefits to Koreans that changed nationality. Economic activities such as dealing in real estate and borrowing funds were restricted. And it is hard for them to join Internet sites because they are without identity number.
  "By forfeiting their essential rights and benefits, the administration could make an effective bill. But the abdicant can still enter university by special selection. It has to be changed. Someday, the persons who gave up their nationality will regret their decisions," said Kim Sang-kyum, professor in Dept. of Law at DU. He is worried about current circumstance, because some people argue that the profile of parents whose children renounce their citizenship should be disclosed. "We quickly blame them because of Korea's specific situation. But they have the freedom to choose. Why should all dual nationality holders become criminals?"
  According to the poll, over the half of students are against publicizing names. We shouldn't approach this matter impulsively.
  The persons who dropped their citizenship, both gain and lose. They are exempted from military duty but lose many benefits as a Korean. Before they renounce their nationality, they had better think carefully about it. If they think only of the present, they will lose many benefits and Korean nationality.

Survey

1. Do you know about the Nationality Law?
①Yes. ②No.

2. What do you think about giving up Korean citizenship?
① I don't care. It is one's freedom of choice.
② It is selfish and I don't like it.
③ I don't care.

3. Would you give up Koreans citizenship, if you had dual citizenship?
① Yes.
② No.
③ I don't care.

3-1. Why did you say "Yes," to the above question?
① The other citizenship is more useful.
② To avoid military duty.
③ I don't like Korea.

4. What do you think about exposing the profile of those who change citizenship?
① Shame them by opening their profile records.
② It is their freedom of choice. I'm against officious interference.
③ I don't care

5. Before the bill was revised, dropping one's citizenship was common among overseas Koreans. It had many benefits with the changing of the law, the government regards them as foreigners. What do you think of it?
① It is a good result because dropping one's citizen means he's against Korea.
② It is too severe of a change.

Seo Yong-guen  komet99@dongguk.edu

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