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date: 30 March 2020

Abstract and Keywords

Like most liberal democracies, the western settler states supplement jus sanguinis rules with jus soli principles that accord birthright citizenship to most people born in their territory. Indigenous tribal nations in those states, on the other hand, do not include birthplace criteria in their allocation of birthright citizenship. Thus while settler states and tribal nations both permit naturalization, tribal nations continue to use ‘jus sanguinis’ descent rules as the exclusive determinant of tribal birthright citizenship. This chapter examines the tensions that arise in settler and tribal law as a result of this divergence, and argues that the tribal preference for unlimited jus sanguinis rules is a legitimate one.

Keywords: Indigenous citizenship, tribal membership, indigeneity, racial discrimination, boundary problems

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