Brazilian Jews, Resident in Israel in 1952, Lose Their Citizenship

Brazilian Jews living in Israel in 1952, when the Israel citizenship law was proclaimed, who did not reject the automatic Israel citizenship conferred in that law have lost their Brazilian citizenship, the Justice Department here ruled today.

The case has been under study since 1952 when the Israel citizenship law was promulgated and the Brazilian legation in Tel Aviv questioned whether Brazilian citizens living in Israel had not been denaturalized by the law. The Foreign Ministry here was in doubt whether the Israel citizenship had been accepted by Brazilian Jews in Israel–many of whom were chalutzim–or whether it had been forcibly thrust upon them.

The matter was referred to the Justice Department, which has now ruled that since the Brazilian citizens in Israel had an opportunity to reject Israel citizenship, and failed to seize this opportunity, they had in fact concurred in their new citizenship status and had forfeited Brazilian citizenship.

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