Case No. 45/03-36/04
                                
      THE CONSTITUTIONAL COURT OF THE REPUBLIC OF LITHUANIA

                              RULING
      ON  THE  COMPLIANCE  OF THE PROVISIONS OF  LEGAL   ACTS
      REGULATING   THE   CITIZENSHIP  RELATIONS  WITH     THE
      CONSTITUTION OF THE REPUBLIC OF LITHUANIA
                                
                        13 November 2006
                             Vilnius
                                
      The  Constitutional  Court of the Republic  of   Lithuania,
composed  of  the Justices of the Constitutional  Court   Armanas
Abramavičius,   Toma  Birmontienė,  Egidijus  Kūris,     Kęstutis
Lapinskas,   Zenonas   Namavičius,  Ramutė  Ruškytė,     Vytautas
Sinkevičius, Stasys Stačiokas, and Romualdas Kęstutis Urbaitis, 
      with the secretary of the hearing—Daiva Pitrėnaitė,
      in the presence of the representatives of the Seimas of the
Republic  of  Lithuania, the party concerned, who  were   Arminas
Lydeka,  a  Member of the Seimas, and Kristina  Pažusytė,   chief
specialist of the Law Department of the Office of the Seimas, 
      pursuant to Articles 102 and 105 of the Constitution of the
Republic  of  Lithuania  and  Article  1  of  the  Law  on    the
Constitutional Court of the Republic of Lithuania, in its  public
hearing on 11 October 2006 heard case No. 45/03-36/04  subsequent
to the following petitions:
      -  the petition of a group of Members of the Seimas of  the
Republic  of  Lithuania,  consisting  of  Aleksander   Poplavski,
Saulius   Lapėnas,   Jonas  Jučas,  Audrius  Klišonis,     Juozas
Matulevičius,   Raimondas  Šukys,  Eligijus  Masiulis,    Romanas
Algimantas    Sedlickas,   Domininkas   Velička,       Virginijus
Martišauskas,   Raimundas  Palaitis,  Algirdas  Gricius,    Dalia
Teišerskytė,  Gintautas Babravičius, Gintaras Šileikis,  Valdemar
Tomaševski,  Valerijus  Simulik,  Vasilij  Fiodorov,   Algimantas
Valentinas  Indriūnas,  Kęstutis  Skamarakas,  Rimas   Valčiukas,
Alfonsas Macaitis, Irena Šiaulienė, Jurgis Utovka, Antanas Baura,
Viktoras   Rinkevičius,  Kazimira  Danutė  Prunskienė,     Sergej
Dmitrijev,  Vydas  Baravykas,  Jonas Lionginas,  Pranas   Vilkas,
Henrikas Žukauskas, Vladas Žalnerauskas and Vaclav Stankevič, the
petitioner,  requesting to investigate whether Article 18 of  the
Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship is not in conflict  with
Articles  29  and  12  of the Constitution of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania;
      -  the  petition  of the Vilnius  Regional   Administrative
Court,  the petitioner, requesting to investigate whether Item  1
of Paragraph 1 of Article 1 and Item 1 of Paragraph 1 of  Article
17 of the Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship to the  extent
that  it  provides that the persons who held citizenship of   the
Republic  of  Lithuania prior to 15 June 1940,  their   children,
grandchildren   and  great-grandchildren  (provided  that    said
persons,  their  children, grandchildren or   great-grandchildren
have  not repatriated), who are residing in other states,   shall
retain the right to citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania  for
an indefinite period of time, and whether Paragraph 2 of  Article
2  of the Republic of Lithuania Law on the Implementation of  the
Law on Citizenship are not in conflict with Paragraphs 1 and 2 of
Article  29  and  Paragraphs  1  and 3  of  Article  12  of   the
Constitution  of  the  Republic  of  Lithuania,  and  with    the
constitutional  principles of justice and a state under the  rule
of law.
      By  the  Constitutional Court decision of 10 May 2006   the
aforementioned  petitions  were joined into one case and it   was
given reference number 45/03-36/04.

      The Constitutional Court 
                        has established:

                                I
      1.  The  group of Members of the Seimas,  the   petitioner,
applied to the Constitutional Court with a petition requesting to
investigate  whether Article 18 of the Law on Citizenship is  not
in conflict with Articles 29 and 12 of the Constitution.
      2.   The  Vilnius  Regional  Administrative  Court,     the
petitioner,  was  considering  an administrative  case.  By   its
ruling,  the said court suspended the consideration of the   case
and  applied  to  the  Constitutional  Court  with  a    petition
requesting  to  investigate  whether Item 1 of  Paragraph  1   of
Article  1 and Item 1 of Paragraph 1 of Article 17 of the Law  on
Citizenship  to the extent that it provides that the persons  who
held  citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania prior to 15   June
1940,  their  children,  grandchildren  and   great-grandchildren
(provided  that said persons, their children, grandchildren   and
great-grandchildren  have not repatriated), who are residing   in
other  states,  shall  retain the right to  citizenship  of   the
Republic  of  Lithuania  for an indefinite period of  time,   and
whether Paragraph 2 of Article 2 of the Law on the Implementation
of  the Law on Citizenship are not in conflict with Paragraphs  1
and  2 of Article 29 and Paragraphs 1 and 3 of Article 12 of  the
Constitution,  and with the constitutional principles of  justice
and a state under the rule of law.

                                II
      1. The petition of the group of Members of the Seimas,  the
petitioner, is based on the following arguments.
      1.1.  Paragraph 1 of Article 18 of the Law on   Citizenship
establishes the grounds for loss of citizenship, while  Paragraph
2  establishes the application exceptions of one of the   grounds
for  loss  of  citizenship—upon acquisition  of  citizenship   of
another state: Item 2 of Paragraph 1 of Article 18 of the Law  on
Citizenship  inter  alia  is  not  applied  to  the  persons   of
Lithuanian  origin  whose parents or grandparents or one of   the
parents  or  grandparents  is or was Lithuanian and  the   person
considers  himself Lithuanian. The petitioner states that   under
this provision, each Lithuanian, who acquired the citizenship  of
another  state,  will  also be able to hold citizenship  of   the
Republic of Lithuania, while the Poles, Russians, Jews and  other
citizens of the Republic of Lithuania of other nationalities  are
not provided with a possibility to have double citizenship. Thus,
in the opinion of the petitioner, linking the loss of citizenship
with  the nationality of a person is in conflict with Article  29
of  the Constitution, wherein it is entrenched that all   persons
shall  be  equal  before  the law, the court,  and  other   state
institutions and officials and that the rights of the human being
may  not be restricted, nor may he be granted any privileges   on
the  ground of gender, race, nationality, language, origin or  on
other ground. 
      1.2.  In  the  opinion  of the  petitioner,  the   disputed
provision of Paragraph 2 of Article 18 of the Law on  Citizenship
which  grants the right to double citizenship to all the  persons
of Lithuanian origin does not comply with Paragraph 2 of  Article
12  of  the Constitution either, wherein it is established   that
with  the exception of individual cases provided for by law,   no
one  may  be  a citizen of both the Republic  of  Lithuania   and
another state at the same time.
      2.  The  petition of the Vilnius  Regional   Administrative
Court, the petitioner, is based on the following arguments.
      2.1.  Under  the  provisions of Item 1 of Paragraph  1   of
Article  1 and Item 1 of Paragraph 1 of Article 17 of the Law  on
Citizenship  and  Paragraph  2 of Article 2 of the  Law  on   the
Implementation  of the Law on Citizenship, the persons who   held
citizenship  of the Republic of Lithuania prior to 15 June  1940,
their  children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren, from  the
standpoint  of  being citizens of the Republic of Lithuania   and
from  the standpoint of the right to retention of citizenship  of
the Republic of Lithuania, are divided into a few groups: (1) the
persons  of  Lithuanian  origin  are  considered  as   Lithuanian
citizens  and/or retain the right to citizenship of the  Republic
of  Lithuania irrespective of where they reside; (2) the  persons
of other ethnical origin (other nationality) are divided into two
groups: first, those who departed to reside to any foreign  state
but  not  to  their  ethnical homeland; in such  case  they   are
considered  as citizens of Lithuania and/or retain the right   to
citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania, and, second, those  who
departed  for  their ethnical homeland and resided  there   (i.e.
those  who  repatriated)—such  persons  are  not  considered   as
citizens of the Republic of Lithuania and they do not retain  the
right  to  citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania.  The   given
definition  of  the notion of repatriation is a disputable   one,
while  the  establishment  of  the  legal  status  of  a   person
(recognition  of  citizenship  or  retention  of  the  right   to
citizenship),  relating it to the ethnical origin or  nationality
of  the  person,  violates  the  equality  of  persons  and    is
discriminatory,  thus, according to the petitioner, such  content
of the disputed provisions of the Law on Citizenship and the  Law
on  the Implementation of the Law on Citizenship is in   conflict
with  Article  29,  Paragraphs  1 and 3 of  Article  12  of   the
Constitution,  and with the constitutional principles of  justice
and a state under the rule of law.
      2.2.  In the opinion of the petitioner, the definition   of
the notion "repatriation" established in Paragraph 2 of Article 2
of  the Law on the Implementation of the Law on Citizenship  does
not  comply  with the universally recognised definition of   this
notion, since, as a rule, while construing this notion, the legal
link  of  the  person  with a certain state, and  not  with   his
ethnical origin, is specified. 
                               III
      In  the  course  of the preparation of the  case  for   the
Constitutional Court hearing, written explanations were  received
from  A.  Lydeka,  the representative of the Seimas,  the   party
concerned, as well as from K. Pažusytė, the representative of the
Seimas,  chief specialist of the Law Department of the Office  of
the Seimas (representing the Seimas, the party concerned, in  the
part  of  the  case subsequent to the petition  of  the   Vilnius
Regional  Administrative  Court, the petitioner), wherein it   is
stated  that  the  disputed provisions of the laws  are  not   in
conflict   with   the   Constitution.  The  position   of     the
representatives of the party concerned is based on the  following
arguments.
      1. A. Lydeka notes that the adoption of the said  provision
of  the Law on Citizenship was conditioned by the requests   from
many  Lithuanian communities abroad to create a possibility   for
the  citizens of the Republic of Lithuania of Lithuanian  origin,
who  have departed from Lithuania after 11 March 1990 and  reside
in other foreign countries at present, not to lose citizenship of
the Republic of Lithuania even after one has acquired citizenship
of the said another country.
      2.   According  to  the  representative  of  the    Seimas,
historically, the appearance of a double citizenship is linked to
the  territorial  changes of states, migration  of   inhabitants,
collision of the laws of the states regulating the procedure  for
acquisition  and  loss of citizenship and other  reasons.   Thus,
appearance of double citizenship is related to the discretion  of
the state to establish the criteria necessary for acquisition  of
citizenship of that state.
      3.  In  the  opinion of the representative  of  the   party
concerned,  the  provision of Paragraph 2 of Article 12  of   the
Constitution that with the exception of individual cases provided
for  by  law,  no one may be a citizen of both the  Republic   of
Lithuania  and  another state at the same time, means  that   the
prohibition of double citizenship is not absolute—the  legislator
may establish the cases when a Lithuanian citizen may at the same
time  be  a citizen of another state. Such case is first of   all
entrenched  in  Article  16 of the Law on  Citizenship,   wherein
granting  of citizenship by way of exception is provided for.  In
the  Law on Citizenship the second case, when a person may   hold
double citizenship, is also provided, i.e. when a person departed
from  Lithuania  and  acquired  citizenship  of  another   state,
however, there are very few such persons. Thus, in the opinion of
A. Lydeka, the disputed provisions of the Law on Citizenship  are
not in conflict with Article 12 of the Constitution. 
      4. While assessing the compliance of Article 18 of the  Law
on  Citizenship  with  Article  29  of  the  Constitution,    the
representative  of  the  Seimas notes that the right  to   retain
citizenship  of  the  Republic of Lithuania for the  persons   of
Lithuanian  origin  may  be  based on  the  distinction  of   the
Lithuanian  Nation  in  the Preamble to  the  Constitution:   the
Lithuanian  Nation embodies "the innate right of the human  being
and  the  Nation to live and create freely in the land of   their
fathers  and forefathers"—in the independent State of  Lithuania.
A.  Lydeka draws one's attention to Paragraph 4 of Article 32  of
the Constitution, wherein it is established that everyone who  is
Lithuanian  may  settle himself in Lithuania, as well as to   the
fact  that  the status of persons of Lithuanian origin was   also
regulated  a  bit differently in former laws than the status   of
persons  of  other ethnical origin. Thus, in the opinion of   the
representative of the party concerned, the disputed provisions of
the Law on Citizenship are not in conflict with Article 29 of the
Constitution, too. 
      5.  While  assessing the notion "repatriation" defined   in
Paragraph 2 of Article 2 of the Law on the Implementation of  the
Law  on  Citizenship, A. Lydeka and K. Pažusytė note that it   is
recognized in the theory of law that a word of a common language,
which  is  used  in the text of a law, usually, along  with   the
general  meaning, acquires also a special—legal—meaning, as  well
as that the legal meaning of any word may be broader or  narrower
than  the  general meaning. Thus, the notion  "repatriation"   is
formed  more narrowly in the Law on Implementation of the Law  on
Citizenship  than in dictionaries: it is to be construed in   the
context  of  the Law on Citizenship and in the system  of   other
provisions of the Constitution and this law.
      6.  The  representatives  of  the  Seimas  think  that   by
establishing the condition in Item 1 of Paragraph 1 of Article 17
of  the Law on Citizenship that the right to citizenship of   the
Republic  of Lithuania shall be retained only to the persons  who
have not repatriated and by defining repatriation as a  departure
for  one's ethnical homeland and settlement there, one aimed   to
restrict the circle of persons who may hold double citizenship.
      7.  According to A. Lydeka and K. Pažusytė, in the Law   on
Citizenship  the legislator established a simpler procedure   for
acquisition  of  citizenship  of the Republic of  Lithuania   for
persons   of  Lithuanian  nationality  and  persons  of     other
nationalities who did not repatriate, thus, as if compensating in
such  way  for these persons, who lost the possibility  to   live
together  with  the community having the acceptable   traditions,
customs and language, i.e. for the supposed more difficult social
adaptation  in  a non-ethnical homeland. In the opinion  of   the
representatives  of the Seimas, the position of the   legislator,
while  establishing  different  conditions  for  acquisition   of
citizenship  of  the  Republic  of  Lithuania  in  the  Law    on
Citizenship,  was  implied by the links of groups  of   different
persons with the Republic of Lithuania. 
      8. In the opinion of the representatives of the Seimas, the
notion  "repatriation",  which  is  defined in the  Law  on   the
Implementation of the Law on Citizenship, reflects the will of  a
person  to  attribute himself to a concrete  ethnical   community
(nation), which lives in the place of his origin and the will  to
seek for the links with members of the ethnical community  living
in  that  place,  to integrate into the life  of  that   ethnical
community  in the cultural, economic, and, as a rule,   political
and legal sense, thus his refusal to relate himself by the duties
with the Republic of Lithuania and the links to faithfulness  and
trust which arise from them. As a rule, such persons try to  bind
themselves in their ethnical homeland and/or bind themselves with
the  permanent legal link with the state, i.e. they acquire   its
citizenship.  In such case the State of Lithuanian no longer  has
any reason to retain the right to the citizenship of the Republic
of  Lithuania  for the person, who used to be a citizen  of   the
Republic  of Lithuania, but who settled himself in his   ethnical
homeland  and  entered into legal political relations with   that
state. 
                                IV
      In  the  course  of the preparation of the  case  for   the
Constitutional Court hearing, written explanations were  received
from  V.  Bulovas  and  G. J. Furmanavičius,  Ministers  of   the
Interior  of the Republic of Lithuania, G. Švedas,  Vice-Minister
of  Justice  of the Republic of Lithuania, P.  Koverovas,   State
Secretary  of  the  Ministry  of  Justice  of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania,  A. Petrauskas, Director General of the Department  of
National  Minorities  and  Lithuanians Living Abroad  under   the
Government of the Republic of Lithuania, A. Gavėnas, Director  of
the  Migration Department under the Ministry of the Interior   of
the Republic of Lithuania, A. Čepas, Director of the Institute of
Law and V. Valeckaitė, Deputy Director of the same institute. 
                                V
      1.  At  the  hearing  of  the  Constitutional  Court,   the
representatives  of the Seimas, the party concerned, who were  A.
Lydeka  and  K. Pažusytė, virtually repeated the  arguments   set
forth in their written explanations. 
      2. The opinions of A. Lydeka and K. Pažusytė concerning the
notion  "repatriation"  were different: A. Lydeka asserted   that
while  repatriating, the person chooses in which states that  can
provide  him  with  citizenship  he  will  settle  himself:    in
Lithuania, or in the state, with which he has social,  linguistic
and  other  relations,  i.e. the person may be considered  as   a
repatriated  one only if his ethnical homeland has statehood  and
may provide the person with citizenship of this state.  According
to K. Pažusytė, the person's repatriation must be interpreted  as
the person's departure to the territory of his ethnical homeland,
irrespective  of the fact, whether this ethnical homeland is   an
independent  state,  or not; while deciding, if the  person   has
repatriated,  the  circumstance  of  whether he  had  (has)   the
possibility to acquire citizenship in his ethnical homeland  and/
or acquired it, does not have essential significance.
      3.  At  the Constitutional Court hearing, a   specialist—D.
Vežikauskaitė,  Head of the Citizenship Section of the  Migration
Department under the Ministry of the Interior of the Republic  of
Lithuania, took the floor.
The Constitutional Court
                           holds that:
                                I
      1.  The  group of Members of the Seimas,  the   petitioner,
requests  to  investigate  whether  Article 18  of  the  Law   on
Citizenship  is  not in conflict with Articles 12 and 29 of   the
Constitution.
      2.   The  Vilnius  Regional  Administrative  Court,     the
petitioner, requests to investigate, whether Item 1 of  Paragraph
1 of Article 1 and Item 1 of Paragraph 1 of Article 17 of the Law
on  Citizenship, to the extent that it provides that the  persons
who  held  citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania prior to   15
June 1940, their children, grandchildren and  great-grandchildren
(provided  that  said persons, their children, grandchildren   or
great-grandchildren  have not repatriated), who are residing   in
other  states,  shall  retain the right to  citizenship  of   the
Republic  of  Lithuania  for an indefinite period of  time,   and
whether Paragraph 2 of Article 2 of the Law on the Implementation
of  the Law on Citizenship are not in conflict with Paragraphs  1
and  2 of Article 29 and Paragraphs 1 and 3 of Article 12 of  the
Constitution,  and with the constitutional principles of  justice
and a state under the rule of law.
      3.  On  17 September 2002, the Seimas adopted the  Law   on
Citizenship.  Paragraph 1 of Article 34 of this law   establishes
that the new Law on Citizenship "shall come into force as from  1
January 2003." Under Paragraph 2 of this article, upon entry into
force  of the Law on Citizenship (wording of 17 September  2002),
the validity of the until then valid Law on Citizenship  (wording
of  5 December 1991 with subsequent amendments and   supplements)
expired. 
      4.  The Law on Citizenship (wording of 17 September   2002)
has been amended and/or supplemented by the Republic of Lithuania
Law  on  Amending Articles 13, 19 and 21 of Law on   Citizenship,
which was adopted by the Seimas on 3 April 2003, the Republic  of
Lithuania Law on Amending and Supplementing Articles 12, 13,  14,
15,  16,  18,  20, 21, 26, 27, 28, 30, 31 and 32 of the  Law   on
Citizenship, which was adopted by the Seimas on 9 December  2004,
the  Republic  of  Lithuania Law on Amending  and   Supplementing
Articles  12,  18, 20, 26, 28 and 30 of the Law on   Citizenship,
which was adopted by the Seimas on 6 April 2006, and the Republic
of  Lithuania  Law  Supplementing  Article  16  of  the  Law   on
Citizenship, which was adopted by the Seimas on 18 July 2006.
      5.  The  Law on Citizenship (wording of 17 September   2002
with  subsequent  amendments and supplements) establishes as   to
what persons are citizens of the Republic of Lithuania, regulates
the  relations of the acquisition of citizenship of the  Republic
of  Lithuania,  of  the right to retain the citizenship  of   the
Republic of Lithuania, of loss and restoration of citizenship  of
the  Republic  of  Lithuania and establishes the  procedure   for
resolving  issues  related  to citizenship of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania and regulates other relations related to citizenship of
the Republic of Lithuania.
      6. On 17 September 2002, the Seimas adopted the Republic of
Lithuania  Law on the Implementation of the Law on   Citizenship,
Paragraph 1 of Article 6 whereof establishes that it "shall  come
into  force  as from 1 January 2003." Under Paragraph 2 of   this
article,  upon entry into force of the Law on the  Implementation
of  the Law on Citizenship, the validity of the until then  valid
Law  "On  the  Procedure for Implementation of the  Republic   of
Lithuania  Law on Citizenship" (wording of 19 October 1995   with
subsequent amendments) expired.
      7. The Law on the Implementation of the Law on  Citizenship
(wording   of  17  September  2002)  has  been  amended    and/or
supplemented  by  the Republic of Lithuania Law on Amending   and
Supplementing  the  Law  on  the Implementation of  the  Law   on
Citizenship, the Law on State Social Insurance Pensions, the  Law
on  Benefit (Social) Pensions, the Provisional Law on the   State
Pensions of Scientists, and the Law on State Pensions, which  was
adopted  by  the  Seimas  on 21 January 2003,  the  Republic   of
Lithuania  Law on Amending and Supplementing Articles 2, 3 and  4
of the Law on the Implementation of the Law on Citizenship, which
was adopted by the Seimas on 11 November 2004 and the Republic of
Lithuania  Law  on  Amending  Article  5  of  the  Law  on    the
Implementation  of the Law on Citizenship, which was adopted   by
the Seimas on 6 April 2006. 
      8. The Law on the Implementation of the Law on  Citizenship
defines the content of the notion "repatriation" used in the  Law
on  Citizenship (wording of 17 September 2002) and regulates  the
relations  related to the application of some provisions of   the
Law on Citizenship (wording of 17 September 2002). 
      9.  In  Article  1  titled "Citizens of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania"  of  the Law on Citizenship (wording of 17   September
2002) it is inter alia established:
      "The following persons shall be citizens of the Republic of
Lithuania:
      1)  Persons  who  held  citizenship  of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania  prior to 15 June 1940, their children,   grandchildren
and  great-grandchildren  (provided  that  said  persons,   their
children,   grandchildren   or  great-grandchildren  have     not
repatriated) <…>."
      In  the  opinion  of the Vilnius  Regional   Administrative
Court,  the  petitioner,  such legal regulation means  that   the
persons  who held citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania  prior
to  15  June  1940,  their  children,  grandchildren  and  great-
grandchildren,  provided  that  said  persons,  their   children,
grandchildren  or great-grandchildren have repatriated, are   not
considered as citizens of the Republic of Lithuania.
      10.  Paragraph  1 of Article 17 titled "Retention  of   the
Right to Citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania" of the Law  on
Citizenship   (wording   of  17  September  2002)  inter     alia
established:
      "The   following  persons  shall  retain  the  right     to
citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania for an indefinite period
of time:
      (1)  persons  who  held  citizenship of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania  prior to 15 June 1940, their children,   grandchildren
and  great-grandchildren  (provided  that  said  persons,   their
children,   grandchildren   or  great-grandchildren  have     not
repatriated), who are residing in other states <…>."
      In  the  opinion  of the Vilnius  Regional   Administrative
Court, the petitioner, such legal regulation means that the right
to  citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania is not retained   to
the  persons  who held citizenship of the Republic of   Lithuania
prior  to 15 June 1940, their children, grandchildren and  great-
grandchildren,  provided  that  said  persons,  their   children,
grandchildren or great-grandchildren have repatriated and who are
residing in other states.
      11. Article 18 titled "Loss of Citizenship of the  Republic
of Lithuania" of the Law on Citizenship (wording of 17  September
2002) established:
      "1. Citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania shall be lost:
      1)  upon  renunciation of citizenship of the  Republic   of
Lithuania;
      2) upon acquisition of citizenship of another state;
      3) on the grounds provided for by international treaties of
the Republic of Lithuania.
      2.  Item 2 of Paragraph 1 of this Article shall not   apply
to: 
      1)  persons  who  held  citizenship  of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania  prior to 15 June 1940, their children,   grandchildren
and  great-grandchildren  (provided  that  said  persons,   their
children,   grandchildren   or  great-grandchildren  have     not
repatriated);
      2)   persons  of  Lithuanian  origin  whose  parents     or
grandparents are or were or one of parents or grandparents is  or
was Lithuanian and the person considers himself Lithuanian.
      3. A person may be recognised as having lost citizenship of
the  Republic  of Lithuania if he is in the military service   of
another  state  or is employed in the civil service  of   another
state  without  having  been granted authorisation  by   relevant
institutions of the Republic of Lithuania."
      In  the opinion of the group of Members of the Seimas,  the
petitioner,  such  legal regulation inter alia means that   every
Lithuanian,  who has acquired citizenship of another state,   may
also be a citizen of the Republic of Lithuania at the same  time,
while  citizens  of  other  nationalities  of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania  do  not  have  a  possibility  in  addition  to   hold
citizenship of another state.
      In this context it is to be noted that Article 6 of the Law
on  Amending and Supplementing Articles 12, 13, 14, 15, 16,   18,
20,  21,  26, 27, 28, 30, 31 and 32 of the Law  on   Citizenship,
which  was  adopted  by the Seimas on 9 December  2004,   amended
Paragraph  3 (wording of 17 September 2002) of Article 18 of  the
Law on Citizenship. It is also to be noted that Article 2 of  the
Law on Amending and Supplementing Articles 12, 18, 20, 26, 28 and
30 of the Law on Citizenship, which was adopted by the Seimas  on
6  April 2006, also amended Paragraph 2 (wording of 17  September
2002)  of Article 18 (wording of 9 December 2004) of the Law   on
Citizenship;  this  article  was  also  supplemented  with    new
Paragraph 4.
      12. Paragraph 2 (wording of 17 September 2002) of Article 2
of  the  Law  on the Implementation of the  Law  on   Citizenship
provides: "Departure for one's ethnical homeland and residence in
the ethnical homeland shall be considered repatriation". 
      In  the  opinion  of the Vilnius  Regional   Administrative
Court,   the   petitioner,  such  definition  of   the     notion
"repatriation"  is  not in line with the universally   recognised
definition  of this notion, as the ethnical origin  (nationality)
of  the  person  is emphasized and not his legal link  with   the
corresponding state.
      13.  It  is  obvious from the arguments of  the  group   of
Members  of  the Seimas and the Vilnius Regional   Administrative
Court, the petitioners, that they doubts whether:
      - the provision "the following persons shall be citizens of
the  Republic of Lithuania: (1) persons who held citizenship   of
the Republic of Lithuania prior to 15 June 1940, their  children,
grandchildren   and  great-grandchildren  (provided  that    said
persons,  their  children, grandchildren or   great-grandchildren
have  not  repatriated)" of Article 1 (wording of  17   September
2002) of the Law on Citizenship, to the extent that, according to
the  Vilnius  Regional Administrative Court, the petitioner,   it
entrenches that the persons who held citizenship of the  Republic
of Lithuania prior to 15 June 1940, their children, grandchildren
and  great-grandchildren,  provided  that  said  persons,   their
children, grandchildren or great-grandchildren have  repatriated,
are  not considered as citizens of the Republic of Lithuania,  is
not in conflict with Article 29 and Paragraphs 1 and 3 of Article
12 of the Constitution and with the constitutional principles  of
justice and a state under the rule of law;
      -  the  provision "the following persons shall retain   the
right  to  citizenship  of  the Republic  of  Lithuania  for   an
indefinite  period of time: (1) persons who held citizenship   of
the Republic of Lithuania prior to 15 June 1940, their  children,
grandchildren   and  great-grandchildren  (provided  that    said
persons,  their  children, grandchildren or   great-grandchildren
have  not  repatriated),  who are residing in other  states"   of
Paragraph  1 (wording of 17 September 2002) of Article 17 of  the
Law on Citizenship, to the extent that, according to the  Vilnius
Regional Administrative Court, the petitioner, it entrenches that
the  right to citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania shall  not
be  retained to the persons who held citizenship of the  Republic
of Lithuania prior to 15 June 1940, their children, grandchildren
and  great-grandchildren,  provided  that  said  persons,   their
children, grandchildren or great-grandchildren have  repatriated,
and  who  are residing in other states, is not in conflict   with
Article  29  and  Paragraphs  1  and 3  of  Article  12  of   the
Constitution  and with the constitutional principles of   justice
and a state under the rule of law;
      -  the  provision "Item 2 of Paragraph 1 of  this   Article
shall  not  apply to: <…> (2) person of Lithuanian origin   whose
parents  or  grandparents  are  or were or  one  of  parents   or
grandparents  is  or  was Lithuanian and  the  person   considers
himself Lithuanian" of Paragraph 2 (wording of 17 September 2002)
of  Article  18 of the Law on Citizenship to the extent that   it
provides that Item 2 (wording of 17 September 2002) of  Paragraph
1 of Article 18 of the Law on Citizenship shall not apply only to
the  persons  of Lithuanian origin, while it shall apply to   the
persons  who  are of non-Lithuanian origin, was not in   conflict
with Articles 29 and 12 of the Constitution;
      -  Paragraph 2 (wording of 17 September 2002) of Article  2
of the Law on the Implementation of the Law on Citizenship is not
in conflict with Article 29 and Paragraphs 1 and 3 of Article  12
of  the  Constitution and with the constitutional principles   of
justice and a state under the rule of law.
      14.  The doubts concerning the compliance of the   disputed
legal  act with the Constitution raised in the petitions of   the
group  of  Members  of  the  Seimas  and  the  Vilnius   Regional
Administrative Court, the petitioners, are related to the fact as
to how one defines who are citizens of the Republic of Lithuania,
what  legislative possibilities for citizens of the Republic   of
Lithuania  also to hold citizenship of another state there   are,
how  the  relations  of loss of citizenship of the  Republic   of
Lithuania  are  regulated  (in particular, upon  acquisition   of
citizenship  of  another state), as well as to the fact how   the
content  of the notion "repatriation" is defined (inter alia   to
the  fact  that,  under  the laws,  whose  compliance  with   the
Constitution  is disputed in the constitutional justice case   at
issue,  repatriation is a circumstance, which determines  whether
the person is a citizen of the Republic of Lithuania, whether the
right to citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania is retained  to
him, etc.).
      While   deciding  according  to  the  petitions  of     the
petitioners  whether the disputed provisions of the laws are  not
in  conflict with the Constitution, the legal regulation of   the
relations of citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania (related to
the  fact  how  one  defines who citizens  of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania  are, how the retention of the right to citizenship  of
the  Republic  of  Lithuania  is  regulated,  what    legislative
possibilities  for citizens of the Republic of Lithuania also  to
hold citizenship of another state there are, how the relations of
loss  of citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania are   regulated
(in  particular, upon acquisition of the citizenship of   another
state),  as  well as to the fact how the content of  the   notion
"repatriation"  is  defined) is to be assessed systemically   and
historically revealing (in the corresponding aspects) inter  alia
the  tradition  and development of the legal regulation  of   the
relations of citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania, as well as
the  aspects  of the institute of citizenship entrenched in   the
international   legal  acts  which  are  significant  for    this
constitutional justice case. 
                                II
      1.  The  citizenship  of the Republic of  Lithuania  is   a
constitutional institute. 
      2. The citizenship relations are regulated by Article 12 of
the  Constitution, wherein it is established that citizenship  of
the Republic of Lithuania shall be acquired by birth and on other
grounds established by law (Paragraph 1), that with the exception
of individual cases provided for by law, no one may be a  citizen
of  both the Republic of Lithuania and another state at the  same
time (Paragraph 2) and that the procedure for the acquisition and
loss of citizenship shall be established by law (Paragraph 3); by
Item 21 of Article 84, under which the President of the  Republic
shall grant citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania according to
the procedure established by law; Article 85 of the Constitution,
under which the President of the Republic shall grant citizenship
of the Republic of Lithuania by issuing a decree, which, in order
to  be valid, must be countersigned—signed by the Prime  Minister
or an appropriate Minister. 
      Other  provisions,  which  determine the legal  status   of
citizens  of the Republic of Lithuania (as well as establish  the
rights,  freedoms  and  duties enjoyed only by citizens  of   the
Republic of Lithuania), are also entrenched in the  Constitution,
inter  alia: the Nation and each citizen shall have the right  to
resist  anyone  who encroaches on the independence,   territorial
integrity, and constitutional order of the State of Lithuania  by
force  (Paragraph  2 of Article 3), the most significant   issues
concerning the life of the State and the Nation shall be  decided
by  referendum, which shall inter alia be announced if not   less
than  300,000  citizens  with  the electoral  right  so   request
(Paragraphs  1 and 3 of Article 9); the State of Lithuania  shall
protect its citizens abroad (Paragraph 1 of Article 13); it shall
be prohibited to extradite a citizen of the Republic of Lithuania
to  another state unless an international treaty of the  Republic
of Lithuania establishes otherwise (Paragraph 2 of Article 13); a
citizen  of  the Republic of Lithuania may move and  choose   his
place  of residence in Lithuania freely and may leave   Lithuania
freely  (Paragraph  1  of  Article 32); a  citizen  may  not   be
prohibited  from returning to Lithuania (Paragraph 2 of   Article
32);  citizens  shall  have  the right  to  participate  in   the
governance  of  their  state  both directly  and  through   their
democratically  elected representatives as well as the right   to
enter  on  equal terms in the State service of the  Republic   of
Lithuania  (Paragraph 1 of Article 33); citizens who, on the  day
of  election,  have  reached  18 years of age,  shall  have   the
electoral right (Paragraph 1 of Article 34); inter alia  citizens
of the Republic of Lithuania shall have the right of  legislative
initiative: 50,000 citizens of the Republic of Lithuania who have
the electoral right may submit a draft law to the Seimas and  the
Seimas must consider it (Paragraph 2 of Article 68); the  defence
of the State of Lithuania against a foreign armed attack shall be
the  right and duty of each citizen of the Republic of  Lithuania
(Paragraph  1  of  Article  139); citizens of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania  must perform military or alternative national  defence
service according to the procedure established by law  (Paragraph
2  of  Article  139);  a  motion  to  alter  or  supplement   the
Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania may be submitted to the
Seimas inter alia by not less than by 300,000 voters (Paragraph 1
of Article 147), etc. 
      It needs to be noted (it is entrenched in the jurisprudence
of  the Constitutional Court) that not all the provisions of  the
Constitution, in the text of which the notion "citizen" is  used,
may be construed adequately, i.e. as including only the  citizens
of  the  Republic  of  Lithuania and  excluding  foreigners   and
stateless persons.
      3.  While  construing  the  constitutional  institute    of
citizenship  of  the Republic of Lithuania,  the   Constitutional
Court  has held: citizenship is a permanent, uninterrupted  legal
link  between the person and the state; citizenship appears  when
the  person becomes a citizen, and continues until the death   of
the  person or until his loss of citizenship; the legal link   of
the  citizen with the state persists no matter where the  citizen
might  be:  whether  in the state a citizen of which he  is,   or
outside its borders, i.e. in another state; after the citizen has
departed  for  another state, his legal link with the  state,   a
citizen   of  which  he  is,  persists;  it  is  the    permanent
(uninterrupted) legal link between the citizen and the state that
permits  to  distinguish this special legal link from the   legal
link  which  appears  between  the state and a  foreigner  or   a
stateless  person,  who  resides  in it  either  permanently   or
temporarily:  when the foreigner or the stateless person   leaves
the  state, his legal link with the state discontinues. When  the
citizen  leaves for another state, his legal link with the  state
whose  citizen he is persists (Constitutional Court ruling of  30
December 2003). 
      Citizenship  of the Republic of Lithuania expresses   legal
membership  of  the person in the State of  Lithuania,   reflects
legal  belongingness  of  the person to the Nation  as  a   state
community.  The  link between citizens and the state is   mutual:
citizenship provides the person with and guarantees him the civil
(political)  rights  and establishes his certain duties  to   the
state; certain duties of the state to its citizens arise from the
citizenship  relations. Citizenship, as a particular legal   link
with the State of Lithuania, is necessary to citizens so that all
their  rights and freedoms, which are enjoyed by citizens,  might
be guaranteed in order that the person could enjoy the protection
of his state within his country as well as abroad.
      4. Paragraph 1 of Article 12 of the Constitution  specifies
the  main  way of acquisition of citizenship of the Republic   of
Lithuania:  citizenship  of the Republic of Lithuania  shall   be
acquired  by  birth.  Under  Article  12  of  the   Constitution,
citizenship  may  be acquired not only by birth (filiation)   but
also by other grounds established by law.
      Paragraph 2 of Article 12 of the Constitution provides that
with  the exception of individual cases provided for by law,   no
one  may  be  a citizen of both the Republic  of  Lithuania   and
another  state at the same time. Thus, a citizen of the  Republic
of  Lithuania may not be a citizen of another state at the   same
time, and a citizen of another state may not be a citizen of  the
Republic of Lithuania at the same time, however, this prohibition
of  double  citizenship  entrenched in the Constitution  is   not
absolute—under Paragraph 2 of Article 12 of the Constitution, the
law may and must provide individual cases, when a person may be a
citizen of both the Republic of Lithuania and another state.
      Thus, from Article 12 of the Constitution a duty arises  to
the  legislator  not  only to establish by law the  grounds   for
acquisition  of citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania and   to
regulate the procedure for acquisition and loss of citizenship of
the  Republic  of Lithuania, but also to provide for   individual
cases,  when a person may at the same time be both a citizen   of
the Republic of Lithuania and another state.
      5.  The Constitutional Court has noted in its ruling of  30
December 2003 that "an absolute majority of persons are  citizens
not because they have expressed their wish to be citizens of  the
state  but because they are linked with the state by means of   a
certain  objective relation: their parents (one of parents)  were
citizens  of  that  state. Acquisition of citizenship  by   birth
(filiation)  is  the main way of acquisition of citizenship;   by
acquisition  of citizenship by birth, continuance of  citizenship
is  ensured  and continuance of the state community,  the   legal
Nation, is ensured as well. It is possible to acquire citizenship
by way of naturalisation, i.e. citizenship is granted to a person
who meets the conditions established in the law. As a rule,  such
conditions  are requirements of permanent residence in the  state
for  a  certain  time  period established in  the  law,  and   of
knowledge of the state language. These requirements are based  on
the provision that the person whishing to acquire citizenship and
the  state must be connected by a permanent factual link   before
citizenship  is  granted, that permanent residence in the   state
during a certain time period established in the law and knowledge
of  the  state  language  are  necessary  pre-conditions  for   a
foreigner  or  a stateless person to integrate himself into   the
society,  to  perceive  the  mentality of  the  Nation  and   its
strivings,  the  constitutional  order  of  the  state,  to   get
acquainted  with the history, culture, customs and traditions  of
the  Nation and the state, to be prepared to take  responsibility
for  the present and the future of the state. It is due to   this
that  it is not sufficient for a citizen of a foreign state or  a
stateless  person  who wishes to acquire citizenship  merely   to
settle  in  this  country-for  this reason  one  has  to   reside
permanently  in  the  state for a longer time period,  which   is
established  in  the law, and to know the state language.   Thus,
acquisition of citizenship is always to be related with a certain
objective  link between the person with the state: this link   is
most often determined by the fact that that children of  citizens
become  citizens  by birth (jus sanguini), in certain  states   a
person  who  was  born within its territory  is  considered   its
citizen  (jus  soli),  or when the permanent factual link  of   a
foreigner or a stateless person with the state, if this foreigner
or  stateless person meets the conditions established in the  law
and  he  is  granted  citizenship  (naturalisation),  becomes   a
permanent legal link with the state."
      6.   The  institute  of  citizenship  entrenched  in    the
Constitution is inseparable from the State of Lithuania and  from
the constitutional concept of the civil Nation—state community. 
      The State of Lithuania came into being on the basis of  the
ethnical  nation—Lithuanian  Nation.  It  is  reflected  in   the
Preamble  to  the  Constitution, wherein it is  entrenched   that
namely  the Lithuanian Nation (i.e. ethnical nation) created  the
State  of Lithuania many centuries ago, for centuries   staunchly
defended  its  freedom and independence, preserved  its   spirit,
native language, writing, and customs, embodied the innate  right
of  the human being and the Nation to live and create freely   in
the  land  of  their fathers and forefathers and  preserved   the
striving  and  the right to reside in the independent  State   of
Lithuania. 
      The  states  created on the basis of ethnical nations   are
national  states. Namely, the national state is a political  form
of  the  common life of the ethnical nation, which  ensures   the
possibility to foster the identity, culture, mentality, language,
traditions  and  customs of the corresponding  ethnical   nation,
which helps to accumulate the experience of statehood and to pass
it  on  to the posterity as well as to gain maturity, and   which
guarantees  the necessary historical survival. The   full-fledged
life  of  the ethnical nation would be particularly burdened   or
even impossible without a national state. 
      7. The fact that the State of Lithuania came into being  on
the  basis  of the ethnical nation is reflected not only in   the
Preamble to the Constitution, but also in other provisions of the
Constitution—Lithuanian shall be the state language (Article 14);
everyone  who is Lithuanian may settle in Lithuania (Paragraph  4
of Article 32). The provision of Paragraph 4 of Article 32 of the
Constitution  that  everyone  who is Lithuanian  may  settle   in
Lithuania, means that all Lithuanians who reside abroad, wherever
their  permanent  residence,  have  the right to  come  back   to
Lithuania,  their  ethnical  homeland, at any  time.  Under   the
Constitution,  it  is  impossible to establish  any  such   legal
regulation, which would sever the Lithuanians living abroad  from
the  Lithuanian Nation. The Lithuanians who reside abroad  cannot
be deprived of the possibility to participate in the life of  the
Lithuanian  Nation, if they seek so. Lithuanians residing  abroad
are an inseparable component of the Lithuanian Nation.
      It is a constitutional basis to establish by law such legal
regulation that Lithuanians residing abroad would have the  right
to  become citizens of the Republic of Lithuania under  different
(easier)  conditions than other persons who seek for  citizenship
of  the  Republic  of  Lithuania (inter  alia  that   Lithuanians
residing  abroad,  who  seek  citizenship  of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania,  be not applied the usual naturalisation  conditions).
This  is  also  a constitutional basis to entrench in  laws   the
institute  of  retention  of  citizenship  of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania,  which  is to be applied to the Lithuanians   residing
abroad  who  seek for citizenship of the Republic of   Lithuania,
particularly  if  they,  their parents,  grandparents  or  great-
grandparents were linked to Lithuania by citizenship relations.
      8.  The persons who attribute themselves to the  Lithuanian
Nation  as  an ethnical nation compose the absolute majority   of
population of the today's State of Lithuania. In this respect, as
well as by the name of the state, by recognition of the status of
Lithuanian   as  the  state  language,  the  Lithuanian    Nation
corresponds  to the generally recognized definition of a  nominal
nation.
      On  the  other hand, also non-Lithuanians—people of   other
ethnical nations—have resided in the lands of Lithuania for ages.
Together with the Lithuanians they created and defended the State
of  Lithuania,  cared  about its future. Thus,  since  ages   the
pattern  of life of the Lithuanian Nation has been based on   the
peaceful  concord between the Lithuanian Nation, as the   nominal
nation, and other national communities living in the territory of
Lithuania  and  on  the forbearance and tolerance of  people   of
various  nations  in respect of each other.  Fostering   national
concord in the land of Lithuania is a historical tradition of the
State  of  Lithuania. This tradition was violated only  in   such
periods of the history of Lithuania, when the State of  Lithuania
itself  was  occupied  by  foreign states, when  the  Nation   of
Lithuania  could not authentically create its political life   by
itself. 
      The Lithuanian Nation shall foster national concord in  the
land  of  Lithuania  (Preamble  to the  Constitution).  In   this
context, it needs to be emphasized that, under the  Constitution,
the whole of the citizens of the State of Lithuania composes  the
civil  Nation—state community. In Article 2 of the  Constitution,
wherein  it is established that the State of Lithuania shall   be
created by the Nation and sovereignty shall belong to the Nation,
and  Article 4, wherein it is established that the Nation   shall
execute  its supreme sovereign power either directly or   through
its  democratically elected representatives, the notion  "Nation"
is used precisely in this sense.
      In  this context, it is to be emphasized that the   notions
"Lithuanian Nation" and "Nation" used in the Constitution may not
be opposed. The Lithuanian Nation is the basis and the  necessary
precondition  of  the  existence of the civil  Nation—the   state
community.
      It  was  mentioned  that citizenship of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania expresses legal membership of a person in the State  of
Lithuania,  reflects  legal belongingness of the person  to   the
Nation  as  a state community. The Lithuanian civil Nation is   a
state  community which unites the citizens of the   corresponding
state  (irrespective of their ethnical origin) and the whole   of
citizens  composes  the Lithuanian civil Nation. The   Lithuanian
civil Nation includes all citizens of the Republic of  Lithuania,
regardless of whether they belong to the nominal nation (they are
Lithuanians),  or  to national minorities (Constitutional   Court
ruling of 10 May 2006). All citizen of the Republic of Lithuania,
irrespective  of  their ethnical origin, under the   Constitution
shall  be  equal; they may not be discriminated or  granted   any
privileges   on  the  grounds  of  their  ethnical  origin    and
nationality.  On the other hand, as the Constitutional Court  has
held, integration into the society of Lithuania, becoming a full-
fledged member of the state community—the civil Nation—is related
to  respective  efforts, including learning the  state   language
(Constitutional Court ruling of 10 May 2006).
      9. Namely the Lithuanian civil Nation, the citizens of  the
reborn State of Lithuania, adopted and announced the Constitution
of  the  Republic of Lithuania in the referendum of  25   October
1992. It is the Lithuanian civil Nation that is the source of the
Constitution.  The  Constitutional Court has held  that   "having
adopted  the  Constitution,  the Lithuanian  Nation  formed   the
standardised  basis for the common life of its own, as the  state
community—the  civil  Nation, and consolidated the state as   the
common good of the entire society" (Constitutional Court  rulings
of 25 May 2004 and 19 August 2006). 
      The Constitutional Court has also held that "only  citizens
of the Republic of Lithuania, i.e. the state community—the  civil
Nation—have the right to create the State of Lithuania, i.e. only
citizens  have the right to decide as to what State of  Lithuania
there must be, to establish the constitutional order of the State
of Lithuania, the organisation of institutions implementing state
power, the basics of relations between the person and the  state,
the system of the country's economy, etc. While implementing  the
rights  and  freedoms  of  citizens,  citizens  participate    in
executing  the sovereignty of the Nation" (Constitutional   Court
rulings of 30 December 2003 and 10 May 2006). 
      10.  In  the  course of establishment of  the  grounds   of
acquisition  of  citizenship  of the Republic of  Lithuania   and
regulation  of  the  procedure  for  acquisition  and  loss    of
citizenship,  the  legislator enjoys discretion. However,   while
doing this, the legislator cannot deny the nature and meaning  of
the   institute  of  citizenship,  he  must  pay  heed  to    the
constitutional  requirement  that a citizen of the  Republic   of
Lithuania  may  also  be  a citizen of  another  state  only   in
individual cases established by law. It should be underlined that
the provision of Article 12 of the Constitution that a person may
be a citizen of the Republic of Lithuania and, at the same  time,
a  citizen of another state only in individual cases  established
by law, means that such cases established by law can be very rare
(individual),   that  cases  of  double  citizenship  must     be
extraordinarily rare, exceptional, that under the Constitution it
is  not  permitted to establish any such legal regulation   under
which  cases of double citizenship would be not   extraordinarily
rare   exceptions,  but  a  widespread  phenomenon.  Under    the
Constitution, expansive construction of the provisions of the Law
on  Citizenship consolidating an opportunity to be a citizen   of
the  Republic of Lithuania and a citizen of another state at  the
same time is impermissible, under which double citizenship  would
be  not  individual,  extraordinarily  rare  exceptions,  but   a
widespread phenomenon (Constitutional Court ruling of 30 December
2003).
      11.  When regulating citizenship relations, one must   also
follow  the  principle  of  equal  rights  of  persons.  As   the
Constitutional  Court has held in its acts more than once,   this
constitutional  principle  means  the innate human right  to   be
treated  equally with others and it consolidates formal  equality
of  all persons, obliges to legally assess the same facts in  the
same manner and prohibits from arbitrary assessment of the  facts
that  are  essentially the same in a varied manner, it does   not
allow to discriminate persons, nor grant them any privileges. The
Constitutional  Court  has  also held  that  the   constitutional
principle of equal rights of persons does not deny a  possibility
to  establish different (differentiated) legal regulation in  the
law  with respect to the categories of certain persons which  are
in  different situations; however, this constitutional  principle
would  be  violated, if certain persons, to  whom   corresponding
legal regulation is designated, if compared with other persons to
whom  corresponding legal regulation is designated, were  treated
differently,  even though there are no such differences   between
them  so  that  such different treatment  would  be   objectively
justifiable. 
      12. It is to be noted in this context that it is recognized
in  the international law that each state establishes itself   by
means  of legal acts as to who are its citizens, i.e. it  defines
the  conditions  and procedure for acquisition, restoration   and
loss  of  citizenship  and regulates other relations  linked   to
citizenship.  Citizenship is an institute of the national law  of
each  state.  Thus, in the 1930 Convention on Certain   Questions
Relating  to the Conflict of Nationality Laws, it is   entrenched
that it is for each state to determine under its own law who  are
its nationals, that this law shall be recognised by other  states
in  so  far as it is consistent with international   conventions,
international  custom,  and  the  principles  of  law   generally
recognised with regard to nationality (Article 1).
      If  necessary,  the states may conclude  multilateral   and
bilateral treaties concerning citizenship with other states.  The
legal   regulation  of  citizenship  established  by  laws    and
international   treaties   has  to  comply  with   inter     alia
international  conventions, customary international law and   the
principles   of   law  generally  recognized  with  regard     to
citizenship.
      13.  In the context of the constitutional justice case   at
issue, attention is to be paid to the provisions of international
legal acts concerning the right of person to citizenship, as well
as the provisions which entrench the concept of repatriation  and
the provisions on double citizenship.
      13.1.  It  is entrenched in the Universal  Declaration   of
Human  Rights (1948) of the United Nations that everyone has  the
right  to a nationality; no one shall be arbitrarily deprived  of
his  nationality nor denied the right to change his   nationality
(Article 15). It is established in the International Covenant  on
Civil  and  Political Rights (1966) of the United  Nations   that
every child has the right to acquire nationality (Article 24).
      International  documents  also entrench  the   undisputable
principle that every state may define who are its citizens and to
establish  the grounds for acquisition and loss of   citizenship.
The 1997 European Convention on Citizenship (which is not  signed
by  the Republic of Lithuania) defines nationality as "the  legal
bond  between  a person and the State and does not indicate   the
person's  ethnical origin" (Article 2); it is also emphasized  in
this convention that each state shall determine under its own law
who  are  its  nationals (Paragraph 1 of Article  3).  The   said
convention  prohibits  from any discrimination in the sphere   of
nationality  as  well as from discrimination on the  grounds   of
national or ethnical origin (Article 5).
      13.2.  The international legal acts also regulate   certain
relations  related to double citizenship. Thus, the 1963  Council
of  Europe  Convention  on the Reduction of  Cases  of   Multiple
Nationality  and  Military  Obligations  in  Cases  of   Multiple
Nationality  (which  has  not  been signed by  the  Republic   of
Lithuania) provides: the Member States of the Council of  Europe,
signatory hereto, considering that cases of multiple  nationality
are liable to cause difficulties and that joint action to  reduce
as  far as possible the number of cases of multiple  nationality,
as between member States, corresponds to the aims of the  Council
of  Europe (Preamble); nationals of the Contracting Parties   who
are of full age and who acquire of their own free will, by  means
of naturalisation, option or recovery, the nationality of another
Party  shall lose their former nationality and they shall not  be
authorized  to retain their former nationality (Article 1).  Even
though  the said convention has been amended and/or  supplemented
later  more  than  once,  inter  alia  establishing    additional
conditions,  reservations and possibilities for a person to  keep
citizenship  of another state without the held citizenship,   the
principled  provision that a person may usually hold  citizenship
of only one state remained.
      It  has been held in this Constitutional Court ruling  that
the  legal  regulation  of citizenship established by  laws   and
international   treaties   has  to  comply  with   inter     alia
international  conventions, customary international law and   the
principles   of   law  generally  recognized  with  regard     to
citizenship.  They  must also be complied with when  the   state,
implementing its discretion to regulate citizenship relations  by
legal  acts, when this discretion is recognized by  international
law,  puts  limitation  on the cases of double  citizenship   and
establishes the necessary exceptions to this limitation. 
      13.3.  In international law, the notion "repatriation"   is
usually used only in the context of protection of victims of  war
and  their  return to the homeland. Namely in this context   this
notion  used  is  in  the  Republic of  Lithuania  Law  "On   the
Ratification of the 1949 Geneva Conventions for the Protection of
the Victims of War and Additional Protocols of 1977 thereto which
Develop  the Provisions of these Conventions", which was  adopted
by  the  Seimas  on 2 May 2000. Thus, in the  Geneva   Convention
Relative  to the Treatment of Prisoners of War of 12 August  1949
and  Additional  Protocols  of 1977 thereto, it  is  inter   alia
established:  parties to the conflict are bound to send back   to
their  own  country,  regardless of number  or  rank,   seriously
wounded  and seriously sick prisoners of war, after having  cared
for  them  until they are fit to travel and no sick  or   injured
prisoner of war who is eligible for repatriation under the  first
paragraph  of this article, may be repatriated against his   will
during  hostilities  (Article  109); prisoners of war  shall   be
released  and  repatriated without delay after the cessation   of
active  hostilities  (Article  118). In  the  Geneva   Convention
Relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War  of
12 August 1949, it is inter alia established: the Parties to  the
conflict  shall,  moreover,  endeavour  during  the  course    of
hostilities,   to  conclude  treaties  for  the  release,     the
repatriation,   the  return  to  places  of  residence  or    the
accommodation  in  a  neutral  country  of  certain  classes   of
internees,  in  particular children, pregnant women and   mothers
with infants and young children, wounded and sick, and  internees
who  have  been  detained  for a long time  (Article  132);   the
Contracting   Parties  shall  endeavour,  upon  the  close     of
hostilities or occupation, to ensure the return of all  internees
to  their  last  place  of residence,  or  to  facilitate   their
repatriation  (Article  134).  Thus, in these  conventions,   the
notion  "repatriation"  is used in the context of the return   of
persons  to the state whose citizens they are (taking the   legal
bond of the person with a corresponding state as a basis) and not
in the context of the ethnical origin of the person. 
      The notion "repatriation" is also explained differently  in
dictionaries:  in some dictionaries "repatriation" is defined  as
"the  return or restoration of a person or object to his or   its
country  of origin" (Black's Law Dictionary. Sixth ed. San  Paul,
1992, p. 900), while in others—as "the whole of actions in  order
to  organize and ensure the return of a person to his country  of
origin  or  departure  place" (Cornu G.  Vocabulaire   juridique.
Paris: PUF, 2003, p. 728).
      13.4. After the Republic of Lithuania became a Member State
of the European Union on 1 May 2004, citizens of the Republic  of
Lithuania became citizens of the European Union.
      In Paragraph 1 of Article 17 of the Treaty Establishing the
European Community it is consolidated:
      "Citizenship  of  the Union is hereby  established.   Every
person  holding  the  nationality of a Member State shall  be   a
citizen  of the Union. Citizenship of the Union shall  complement
and not replace national citizenship".
      It  is  to be held that citizenship of the European   Union
does  not  change  the  content of  the  national  institute   of
citizenship  of  any member state, thus, it does not change   the
content  of  the  institute of citizenship of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania,  either. In respect to citizenship of the Republic  of
Lithuania,  citizenship of the European Union is   complementary,
additional,  as only a person, who holds citizenship of a  member
state  of  the  European Union, in this case,  the  Republic   of
Lithuania,  may  be  a  citizen  of  the  European  Union.    The
restriction of double citizenship entrenched in the  Constitution
is not applicable to citizenship of the European Union, a  Member
State of which is the Republic of Lithuania. 
                               III
      On the compliance of Item 1 (wording of 17 September  2002)
of  Article  1  and  Item 1 (wording of 17  September  2002)   of
Paragraph  1  of  Article  17 of the  Law  on  Citizenship   with
Paragraphs  1  and  3  of  Article 12  and  Article  29  of   the
Constitution, with the constitutional principles of justice and a
state  under  the rule of law, on the compliance of Paragraph   2
(wordings of 17 September 2002 and 6 April 2006) of Article 18 of
the  Law  on  Citizenship  with  Articles  12  and  29  of    the
Constitution, and on the compliance of Paragraph 2 (wording of 17
September 2002) of Article 2 of the Law on the Implementation  of
the Law on Citizenship with Paragraphs 1 and 3 of Article 12  and
Article  29  of  the Constitution and  with  the   constitutional
principles of justice and a state under the rule of law.
      1.  The restoration of the State of Lithuania in 1990   was
based  on  the  continuity  of  the state,  thus,  also  on   the
continuity of Lithuanian citizenship. Thus, while deciding on the
compliance  of  the  disputed provisions of the  laws  with   the
Constitution in this constitutional justice case, it is necessary
to clarify the traditions of the legal regulation of  citizenship
relations  and its development in Lithuania in the aspects   that
are raised by the group of Members of the Seimas and the  Vilnius
Regional   Administrative  Court,  the  petitioners,  in    their
petitions: definition of the corps of citizens, establishment  of
legislative  possibilities  for  citizens  of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania  also to have citizenship of another state,  regulation
of  the  relations  of loss of citizenship of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania  (particularly,  when citizenship of another state   is
acquired), retention of the right to citizenship of the  Republic
of   Lithuania   and  definition  of  content  of  the     notion
"repatriation"   (inter   alia   whether  repatriation   is     a
circumstance, which determines whether the person is a citizen of
the  Republic of Lithuania, whether the right to citizenship   of
the Republic of Lithuania is retained to him, etc.)
      2.  After  the  restoration of the  independent  State   of
Lithuania  on 16 February 1918, its legal bases were grounded  on
the provisional constitutions and laws. 
      On 2 November 1918, the State Council of Lithuania  adopted
the  basic laws of the Provisional Constitution of the State   of
Lithuania—the   Provisional   Constitution  of   the     restored
independent  State of Lithuania. It did not include any  explicit
provisions regulating citizenship relations (it did not define as
to  who  were  citizens of the State of Lithuania,  it  did   not
establish  the  grounds  for acquisition or loss  of   Lithuanian
citizenship,  etc.), but it included provisions entrenching   the
fundamental  rights  of  citizens. The basic laws  of  the   1918
Provisional  Constitution of the State of Lithuania   constituted
the  constitutional basis to regulate the Lithuanian  citizenship
relations by law.
      It  is  to be noted that virtually analogous basis of   the
legal  regulation of Lithuanian citizenship relations were   also
entrenched in the subsequently adopted provisional  constitutions
of  the  State  of Lithuania—the Basic Laws of  the   Provisional
Constitution  of  the  State of Lithuania adopted by  the   State
Council  of  Lithuania  on  4 April  1919  and  the   Provisional
Constitution of the State of Lithuania adopted by the Constituent
Seimas on 10 June 1920. 
      3.  In  the first years of the existence of  the   restored
State  of Lithuania the relations of Lithuanian citizenship  were
regulated by the Provisional Law on Lithuanian Citizenship and by
bilateral treaties with foreign states.
      3.1.  §1 of the Provisional Law on Lithuanian  Citizenship,
which was adopted by the Cabinet of Ministers on 9 January  1919,
establishes that the citizens of Lithuania shall be:
      "(1)  persons, whose parents and grandparents have  resided
in  Lithuania for quite a while, and they have always resided  in
Lithuania  themselves; (2) children of persons specified in   the
first  Item,  who,  even  though  have  not  always  resided   in
Lithuania, finally returned to reside there; (3) persons, who had
resided in Lithuania for not less than ten years until 1914  and:
(a) either owned their own real property, or (b) had a  permanent
job; (4) children of a Lithuanian citizen; (5) his wife or widow;
(6) children of an unmarried woman, who is a Lithuanian  citizen,
if  they are not accepted by a foreigner as his children and  (7)
foreigners,  who are newly accepted as Lithuanian citizens."  The
provision of Item 3 quoted here was applied with reservation that
"persons  shall not be considered as Lithuanian citizens even  if
they had permanent jobs <…> if their jobs were only to serve  the
State of Russia, i.e. they were Russian officials".
      Thus, under the Provisional Law on Lithuanian  Citizenship,
the  corps  of citizens was composed of the Lithuanian   citizens
ipso  iure: permanent residents of Lithuania and their   children
who returned to reside in Lithuania from abroad; persons, who had
resided in Lithuania for not less than ten years by 1914 and  who
either  owned  real property or had permanent jobs; as  well   as
persons  who  were  born  with citizenship  or  acquired  it   by
marriage; it was also possible to acquire Lithuanian  citizenship
by way of naturalization.
      The  Provisional Law on Lithuanian Citizenship was  amended
and  supplemented, however, the provisions on the composition  of
the corps of Lithuanian citizens were not amended in essence.
      3.2. From the first international treaties concluded by the
independent State of Lithuania with other states, which regulated
inter  alia  Lithuanian  citizenship  relations,  those  to    be
mentioned are the Lithuanian Peace Treaty with Russia of 12  July
1920  and  the  Convention between Lithuania and Latvia  on   the
Rights  of  Citizens  of  9 July  1921.  Under  these   bilateral
international treaties, persons had the right to choose only  the
citizenship  of one or another state (accordingly, Lithuanian  or
Russian, or Lithuanian or Latvian); they could not be citizens of
both  states  who concluded corresponding treaties at  the   same
time. Lithuania concluded international treaties regulating inter
alia  Lithuanian  citizenship  relations also  with  some   other
states.
      4.  On  1 August 1922, the Constituent Seimas adopted   the
Constitution  of the State of Lithuania. Part II thereof   titled
"Lithuanian  Citizens  and Their Rights" inter alia   established
that  the citizenship right shall be acquired and lost  following
the  Citizenship Law (part one of §8), and that no one can be   a
citizen of Lithuania and any another state at the same time (§9).
      Such  constitutional prohibition of double citizenship  was
based  on the fact that "now there are a lot of foreigners   who,
without  renouncing either Poland or Russia, also would like   to
enjoy  the rights of Lithuanian citizens, but who do not want  to
perform the duties that fall upon Lithuanian citizens. Therefore,
it is written in the Constitution that no one can be a citizen of
Lithuania and any another state at the same time" (Jankūnaitė  V.
Lietuvos   Valstybės   Konstitucija   su   paaiškinimais     [The
Constitution  of  the  State of  Lithuania  with   Explanations].
Kaunas, 1922, p. 25). 
      5.  On  15  May  1928,  the  President  of  the    Republic
promulgated  the Constitution of the State of Lithuania. It   was
established in this Constitution that no one can be a citizen  of
Lithuania and any other state at the same time (part one of §10),
but it was also established that "a Lithuanian citizen,  however,
shall  not  lose  his citizenship rights after he has  become   a
citizen  of  any  American land if he  performs  certain   duties
specified  by  the  law"  (part  two of  §10).  Thus,  the   1928
Constitution  entrenched  not  only the  prohibition  of   double
citizenship but also its exceptions.
      6.  After  entry into force of the 1928 Constitution,   the
1919  Provisional Law on Lithuanian Citizenship (with  subsequent
amendments  and  supplements)  continued  to  be  in  force    in
Lithuania. 
      7.  While construing the prohibition of double  citizenship
entrenched  in the then legal acts regulating citizenship   legal
relations  and  exceptions thereto, it is to be noted  that   the
prohibition of double citizenship was determined by the  striving
of  the restored and independently developing State of  Lithuania
to clearly define the corps of its citizens and not to allow that
such  legal situations appear that a Lithuanian citizen would  be
bound   by  loyalty  also  to  another  state—the  state    whose
citizenship,  along  with the Lithuanian citizenship,  he   would
hold. Meanwhile, the said exception to the prohibition of  double
citizenship  was  determined  by the striving of  the  State   of
Lithuania not to lose the link with Lithuanian citizens  residing
in  those  foreign states, where they emigrated at that time   in
huge  numbers.  Namely because of the fact that at  that   moment
Lithuanian  citizens  mostly emigrated (in huge numbers, due   to
various  reasons)  to  the  states  of  the  American   continent
(Argentina,  Canada,  Brazil,  the  United  States  of   America,
Uruguay),  the  said  exception  to the  prohibition  of   double
citizenship  was  established for such Lithuanian citizens,   who
acquired  citizenship  "of any American land". It is also to   be
noted  that  part  of  Lithuanian  citizens  would  depart   from
Lithuania  temporarily and even after acquisition of  citizenship
of other states, they would return to Lithuania after some time. 
      8.  In  this  context  one is to  mention  the  Treaty   on
Naturalisation  and  Military  Service between the  Republic   of
Lithuania and United States of America which was concluded on  18
October  1937 and came into force on 20 July 1938. It   regulated
the naturalisation and conscription relations of the persons  who
held  double citizenship. In the said treaty it was   established
that the citizens of one of the contracting parties, who will  be
naturalized  in  the territory of another country and  who   will
temporally return to "the country of their original  citizenship"
are  not to be required to perform military service or any  other
act  of  faithfulness, however, the person who returned  to   his
country  of origin and resided there for more than two years  had
to  be considered as one who refused naturalization (Article  I).
Also a person, who was born in the territory of one country,  and
whose parents are citizens of another country, and who, under the
laws  of  that country, holds citizenship of both countries   but
permanently  resides in the territory of that country, is not  to
be  forced  to  perform  military service or any  other  act   of
faithfulness,  if  he temporally (for not more than  two   years)
resides in the territory of the second country (Article II).
      9.  On 11 February 1938, the Seimas adopted the  Lithuanian
Constitution. It was promulgated by the President of the Republic
on  12  May  1938.  Chapter  II  titled  "Citizenship"  of   this
Constitution  entrenched the grounds for acquisition and loss  of
Lithuanian citizenship (Articles 11-14), inter alia the principle
of  prohibition  of  double citizenship: "after  acquisition   of
foreign   citizenship,   the  citizen  shall  lose     Lithuanian
citizenship"  (Paragraph  1  of Article 13).  Moreover,  it   was
established that the conditions and procedure for acquisition  of
citizenship,  as  well as those for acceptance as  a   Lithuanian
citizen  and  deprivation  and  loss  of  citizenship  shall   be
established by the law (Article 15). 
      It  needs  to be noted that the 1938 Constitution did   not
entrench the prohibition of double citizenship, but the exception
to such prohibition: in cases established by law, a citizen,  who
holds foreign citizenship, may also retain Lithuanian citizenship
(Paragraph 2 of Article 13). Thus, the legislator had the duty to
establish  cases  when a person could be a citizen not  only   of
Lithuania, but also of another state.
      Moreover, under Item 3 of Article 12 of the Constitution, a
person who has merits to the State of Lithuania could be accepted
as  a  Lithuanian  citizen. This constitutional  provision   also
implied  that  also  such  person with merits to  the  State   of
Lithuania who was a citizen of another state could be accepted as
a  Lithuanian  citizen. Thus, the said constitutional   provision
implied one more exception to prohibition of double citizenship.
      10.  On  8  August  1939, the President  of  the   Republic
promulgated  the  Law  on  Lithuanian  Citizenship.  The    legal
regulation  established by it was in most aspects different  from
the  one  established in the formerly valid Provisional  Law   on
Lithuanian   Citizenship   (with  subsequent   amendments     and
supplements). 
      The  Law  on  Lithuanian Citizenship of 8 August  1939   no
longer  included  the  provisions  defining  what  persons    are
Lithuanian  citizens,  as the corps of citizens of the State   of
Lithuania  had already been formed under the Provisional Law   on
Lithuanian   Citizenship   (with  subsequent   amendments     and
supplements) of 9 January 1919. The Law on Lithuanian Citizenship
established the procedure for acquisition, deprivation, loss  and
retrieval of citizenship. 
      The   Law   on  Lithuanian  Citizenship  entrenched     the
prohibition   of  double  citizenship  (Article  20).  It    also
entrenched  two exceptions to this prohibition: (1) it   provided
for  a  possibility  to grant Lithuanian citizenship by  way   of
exception:  a person with merits to the State of Lithuania  could
be  accepted  as  a  Lithuanian  citizen  without  applying   the
condition  established in Article 10 for Lithuanians in order  to
acquire  Lithuanian  citizenship—to settle in Lithuania—and   the
conditions established in Article 11 for non-Lithuanians in order
to  acquire  Lithuanian  citizenship, inter alia  the   condition
established in Item 5 of this article also to be a citizen of the
state,  under whose laws a person would lose citizenship of  that
state  after becoming a Lithuanian citizen (Article 12); (2)   it
entrenched a possibility for a citizen of Lithuania, who accepted
citizenship of a foreign state, to retain Lithuanian  citizenship
upon permission by the Minister of the Interior (Article 21). 
      11. One is also to mention the Treaty between the  Republic
of Lithuania and the German Reich on Citizenship of the Residents
of the Town of Klaipėda. It is to be emphasized that this  Treaty
was signed on 7 July 1939, thus, already after the occupation  of
the Klaipėda region and its annexation to the German Reich; after
being  ratified  by the President of the Republic, it came   into
force  on  9  November  1939.  The  said  treaty  regulated   the
citizenship matters of the residents of the Klaipėda region which
had been annexed by a foreign state. It inter alia entrenched the
prohibition to have citizenship of both the Republic of Lithuania
and the German Reich at the same time.
      12.  One  is  also  to mention  the  legal  regulation   of
citizenship relations of the residents of Vilnius and its  region
in  the treaties with Russia and the Soviet Union which  replaced
Russia  as well as in the Introductory Law on the  Administration
of Vilnius City and its Region. 
      12.1.  The Peace Treaty between Lithuania and Russia  which
was  signed  on  12  July 1920 established  the  border   between
Lithuania  and  the then Soviet Russia. The  Constituent   Seimas
ratified  this treaty on 6 August 1920 and the parties  exchanged
the  ratification letters on 14 October 1920. Under this   treaty
Vilnius and its region remained for Lithuania. It was established
in  this treaty that the persons who reside in the territory   of
Lithuania  on the day of its ratification and "who themselves  or
whose parents permanently reside in Lithuania or who were entered
into  the  communities of settlements, towns or estates  in   the
territory  of Lithuania", as well as the persons who had  resided
in  Lithuania  for not less than ten years by 1914 and  who   had
permanent  jobs,  "excluding  the  former  civil  and    military
servants,  of  non-Lithuanian origin, with their  families"   are
recognized as citizens of the State of Lithuania. The persons who
had  reached 18 years of age and who resided in the territory  of
Lithuania,  had  the right to express their will to retain   (opt
for)  Russian citizenship in one year after the ratification   of
this  treaty. In such case, "their citizenship shall be  followed
by  their  children who are younger of 18 years of age  and   the
wife,  if  there is no other agreement between the  husband   and
wife"  (Article VI). Thus, also under this treaty persons had  to
choose  citizenship  of only one state (Lithuanian or   Russian);
they could not be citizens of both states at the same time.
      12.2. Due to the existing circumstances, namely due to  the
fact that Vilnius and its region were annexed by Poland in  1920-
1939, Lithuania could not implement the sovereignty of the  state
in  this  part  of  its territory.  The  implementation  of   the
citizenship institute in Vilnius and its region was restricted. 
      12.3.  After World War II had begun, the then Soviet  Union
occupied  a part of the territory of the then Poland,   including
its  annexed  Vilnius  and its region. On 10 October  1939,   the
Treaty  on Transferring of Vilnius and the Vilnius Region to  the
Republic of Lithuania and Mutual Assistance between Lithuania and
the  Soviet  Union  was signed. The President  of  the   Republic
ratified this treaty on 14 October 1939 and the parties exchanged
the ratification letters on 16 October 1939. It was agreed by the
contracting parties that "the Soviet Union shall transfer Vilnius
and  the  Vilnius region to the Republic of Lithuania   including
them  into  the  composition of the territory of  the  State   of
Lithuania  and  establishing the border between the Republic   of
Lithuania and the USSR <…>" (Article I) by this treaty. It is  to
be  noted that by the said treaty not the whole territory of  the
Vilnius  region which had to belong to the Republic of  Lithuania
under the Peace Treaty signed by Lithuania and Russia on 12  July
1920 was transferred to the Republic of Lithuania.
      12.4.   On  27  October  1939,  the  Seimas  adopted    the
Introductory  Law on the Administration of Vilnius City and   its
Region which was promulgated by the President of the Republic  on
27 October 1939. It was established in Article 1 of this law that
"Lithuanian legal regulations shall be in effect in Vilnius  city
and its region", and in Article 3—that "the residents of  Vilnius
city  and  its  region  who were considered to  be  citizens   of
Lithuania on the day when the ratification documents of the Peace
Treaty  between  Lithuania  and  Russia of  12  July  1920   were
exchanged  and who had the place of residence in Vilnius city  or
its  region on the day when this law came into effect, shall   be
considered  Lithuanian citizens. Wives and children of up to   21
years  of  age  of  these  Lithuanian  citizens  shall  also   be
considered Lithuanian citizens". 
      13. Summing up, it is to be held that the corps of citizens
of the restored independent State of Lithuania was formed on  the
basis of permanent residents of Lithuania, irrespective of  their
nationality. 
      It is to be emphasized that since the independent State  of
Lithuania  was  restored on 16 February 1918 till 15 June   1940,
when  Lithuania lost its independence after the Soviet Union  had
performed  its  aggression  towards  the  independent  State   of
Lithuania, it was typical for the legal regulation of  Lithuanian
citizenship relations that all the time it was aimed at  defining
the corps of Lithuanian citizens as clearly as possible; this was
done  by  following the principled provision that  a   Lithuanian
citizen may not be a citizen of any other state at the same time,
save  separate  exceptions (whose regulation in the  legal   acts
changed  in the corresponding periods of time of the  development
of  the  State of Lithuania). This principled provision  of   the
prohibition  of  double citizenship was followed both  when   the
established  corresponding legal regulation was authentic   (i.e.
when  the State of Lithuania and its institutions could  actually
decide  independently  how  to regulate  Lithuanian   citizenship
relations) and when the corresponding legal regulation was forced
upon  the  State  of  Lithuania  from  outside  (i.e.  when   the
amendments  of  the legal regulation of  Lithuanian   citizenship
relations  were  determined  by the actions of other  states   in
respect of the State of Lithuania). 
      In the context of the constitutional justice case at  issue
it  is  also to be noted that till 15 June 1940 the  legal   acts
regulating   Lithuanian  citizenship  relations  included     the
provisions concerning the return of a person to Lithuania or  his
departure to other states, however, the notion "repatriation" was
not used.
      14. After the Soviet Union committed its aggression against
the independent State of Lithuania on 15 June 1940, Lithuania was
occupied,  later  also annexed and incorporated into the   Soviet
Union. After the Soviet Union occupied and annexed Lithuania, the
validity of the 1938 Lithuanian Constitution and other legal acts
of the State of Lithuania was unlawfully terminated. Annexed  and
administered  by  the  Soviets, Lithuania was renamed  into   the
Lithuanian  Soviet Socialist Republic (the Lithuanian SSR).   The
acts of the Soviet power also denied the institute of  Lithuanian
citizenship—it  was not possible to implement it in the  occupied
and annexed territory of the State of Lithuania. 
      On 7 September 1940, the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of
the  Soviet  Union  passed the Ordinance "On the  Procedure   for
Acquisition  of  Citizenship  for  the Citizens  of  the   Soviet
Socialist Republics of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia", Item 1  of
which  established  that  "citizens  of  the  Soviet    Socialist
Republics  of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia shall be citizens  of
the USSR since the day, after these republics are admitted to the
USSR." 
      Pursuant  to  this  ordinance, on 30  December  1940,   the
Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the Lithuanian SSR passed  the
Ordinance  "On the Acquisition of Citizenship of the   Lithuanian
SSR",  by  which  it recognized that "As from the day  that   the
Lithuanian  SSR is admitted to the composition of the USSR,   all
those persons who had the place of residence in the territory  of
the  present  Lithuanian SSR <…> on 1 September 1939,  shall   be
considered  citizens  of  the Lithuanian  SSR,  irrespective   of
whether  at that moment these persons had Lithuanian  citizenship
or not."
      Thus, by the unlawful decision of the unlawful power, which
denied  both  the  law  of  the  State  of  Lithuania  and    the
international  law,  all  the then citizens  of  Lithuania   were
declared  as  "citizens  of  the  USSR"  and  "citizens  of   the
Lithuanian SSR" by force. 
      "Citizenship   of  the  USSR"  and  "citizenship  of    the
Lithuanian  SSR" which were imposed by such force, were and   are
null and void. 
      15.  The Lithuanian Nation has never accepted the loss   of
statehood.
      As  it  was held in the 11 March 1990 Declaration "On   the
Powers  of the Deputies of the Supreme Soviet of the   Lithuanian
SSR" of the Supreme Council of the Republic of Lithuania, at  the
end  of  the  ninth  decade of the 20th century  "when  the   new
possibilities  came into being, the movement of the rebirth   and
independence  of the Nation began to manifest openly,   including
the widest levels of the society. The will of the Nation,  having
uttered in public in civil actions, became the expression of  its
sovereign power through the existing institutions". 
      It  was also held in the 11 March 1990 Declaration "On  the
Powers  of the Deputies of the Supreme Soviet of the   Lithuanian
SSR" of the Supreme Council of the Republic of Lithuania that the
usage  of  the  structures of the foreign state which  had   been
imposed on Lithuania should not be interpreted as the recognition
of  the  sovereignty  of the state which imposed them  over   the
Lithuanian  Nation and its territory or the annexation  committed
by that state. 
      16. During the time of rebirth (1988-1990), when  Lithuania
was  still  occupied  and  annexed  by  the  Soviet  Union,   the
Lithuanian Nation, acting through the Lithuanian Reform  Movement
(Sąjūdis),  achieved that the administrative institutions   which
where  created by the foreign state and functioned in  Lithuania,
inter alia the Supreme Soviet of the Lithuanian SSR, would  adopt
the  acts,  anticipating  the  restoration  of  the    Lithuanian
statehood. 
      In  this respect, the Law on Citizenship of the  Lithuanian
SSR  which  was  adopted  by  the then  Supreme  Soviet  of   the
Lithuanian  SSR on 3 November 1989, which came into force on  the
day of its adoption, was of particular importance.
      16.1. The "citizenship of the Lithuanian SSR" provided  for
in  the  Law on Citizenship of the Lithuanian SSR meant  that   a
special  legal status was established to the former citizens   of
the  Republic of Lithuania, their children and grandchildren  who
were permanent residents in the then territory of the  Lithuanian
SSR—different  from the one established to the persons, who  were
in  the  territory  of  the then Lithuanian  SSR,  to  whom   the
"citizenship of the Lithuanian SSR" was not recognized. The  said
act,  which separated the permanent residents of Lithuania   from
the  persons  who arrived from the Soviet Union and  resided   in
Lithuania, particularly Soviet soldiers, was aimed to define  and
unite  the  Lithuanian Nation and to create political and   legal
preconditions  in  order  to express the will of the  Nation   in
democratic elections or by referendum. 
      16.2.  Article  1 of the Law on Citizenship (wording of   3
November  1989) established that the following persons shall   be
"citizens   of  the  Lithuanian  SSR":  (1)  persons  who    held
citizenship   of  the  Republic  of  Lithuania,  children     and
grandchildren of such persons, as well as other persons who  were
permanent residents on the territory of the Lithuanian SSR  prior
to 15 July 1940, and their children and grandchildren who now are
or  have  been  permanent  residents on  the  territory  of   the
Lithuanian  SSR;  (2)  persons  who had  a  permanent  place   of
residence in the Lithuanian SSR, provided that they were born  in
the territory of the Lithuanian SSR, or proved that at least  one
of their parents or grandparents was born on said territory,  and
provided  that they are not citizens of another state; (3)  other
persons who, up to and including the date of entry into force  of
this  law, had been permanent residents in the territory of   the
Republic  and had here a permanent job or other permanent   legal
source  of  support;  such  persons shall  freely  choose   their
citizenship  within two years following the entry into force   of
this  law;  and (4) persons who had acquired citizenship of   the
Lithuanian SSR under this law.
      16.3.  The Law on Citizenship (wording of 3 November  1989)
provided for institutes of retention of the right to  citizenship
of  the  Lithuanian  SSR and recognition of citizenship  of   the
Lithuanian  SSR (in this law also referred to as "citizenship  of
the  Republic"). The right to citizenship of the Lithuanian   SSR
was retained to the persons who were deported from the  territory
of  Lithuania  or  who  departed from it in  or  about  1940   or
thereafter,  as  well as for children and grandchildren of   such
persons (Paragraph 1 of Article 22). Citizenship of the  Republic
was  recognized  to  other Lithuanians after they  relocated   to
reside in Lithuania and made an oath to the Republic (Paragraph 2
of Article 22). 
      16.4.  It  needs to be noted that the Law  on   Citizenship
(wording  of  3  November  1989) defined the  persons  who   were
considered  citizens  of the Lithuanian SSR and the persons   who
were  retained  the right to citizenship of the  Lithuanian   SSR
differently: citizens of the Lithuanian SSR were considered inter
alia  persons  who were citizens of the Republic  of   Lithuania,
children  and  grandchildren of such persons, as well  as   other
persons who were permanent residents in the territory of the then
Lithuanian  SSR  prior to 15 July 1940, and their  children   and
grandchildren  who at that time were permanent residents in   the
territory  of the Lithuanian SSR, while the right to   Lithuanian
citizenship  was retained to the persons who were deported   from
the  territory of Lithuania or departed from it in or about  1940
or thereafter (thus, who did not reside in Lithuania), as well as
for children and grandchildren of such persons.
      16.5.  It  is  also  to  be  mentioned  that  the  Law   on
Citizenship (wording of 3 November 1989) provided for acquisition
of citizenship of the Lithuanian SSR by naturalisation (Item 2 of
Paragraph  1  of Article 10 and Article 15), and it   established
that  by  way of exception, a person holding the citizenship   of
another state may be granted citizenship of the Lithuanian SSR by
the  Presidium  of  the  Supreme Soviet of  the  Lithuanian   SSR
(Article 7). 
      16.6.  It  is  to be particularly  emphasized  that   under
Paragraph 4 of Article 35 of the Law on Citizenship (wording of 3
November 1989), a two-year period of time was established for the
law's  "full  implementation" after its entry into  force.   This
provision  is  to  be construed taking into account  Item  3   of
Article 1 of the said law, under which "other persons who, up  to
and including the date of entry into force of this Law, have been
permanent  residents  on the territory of the Republic and   have
here  a permanent job or other permanent legal source of   living
<…> shall freely choose their citizenship within two years  after
the  entry  into force of this Law", as well as Paragraph  4   of
Article  2, which established that "persons of the full age   who
within  two years from the date of entry into force of this   Law
have not gained a passport of the citizen of the Lithuanian  SSR,
shall be considered as those who have not accepted citizenship of
the Lithuanian SSR". In this context, it is also to be noted that
under  Paragraph  1  of  Article 35 of the  Law  on   Citizenship
(wording of 3 November 1989), "for two years after this Law comes
into  force,  persons referred to in Article 1 of this Law   may,
until  they freely choose their citizenship, avail themselves  of
the rights of a citizen of the Lithuanian SSR".
      16.7.  On 13 April 1994, the Constitutional Court, in   the
constitutional justice case subsequent to the petition of a group
of  Members  of  the  Seimas,  the  petitioner,  requesting    to
investigate  whether the 22 December 1993 Seimas Resolution   "On
Amending  Item 5 of the Resolution of the Supreme Council of  the
Republic  of  Lithuania 'On the Implementation Procedure of   the
Republic  of Lithuania Law on Citizenship'" was not in   conflict
with  Articles  12 and 28 and Paragraph 1 of Article 29  of   the
Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania, adopted the Ruling "On
the  compliance  of  the  Seimas of the  Republic  of   Lithuania
Resolution  "On Amending Item 5 of the Resolution of the  Supreme
Council  of  the  Republic of Lithuania 'On  the  Procedure   for
Implementing  the  Republic  of Lithuania Law  on   Citizenship',
adopted  22 December 1993, with the Constitution of the  Republic
of  Lithuania", in which it was inter alia held that the  persons
specified  in  Item  3 of Article 1 of the  Law  on   Citizenship
(wording of 3 November 1989) (i.e. "other persons who, up to  and
including  the  date of entry into force of this Law, have   been
permanent  residents  on the territory of the Republic and   have
here a permanent job or other permanent legal source of  living")
were different from the persons specified in Items 1 and 2  (i.e.
the  persons who held citizenship of the Republic of   Lithuania,
children  and  grandchildren of such persons, as well  as   other
persons  who  were permanent residents on the territory  of   the
Lithuanian  SSR  prior to 15 July 1940, and their  children   and
grandchildren  who then were or had been permanent residents   on
the territory of the Lithuanian SSR; persons who had a  permanent
place of residence in the Lithuanian SSR, provided that they  had
been  born on the territory of the Lithuanian SSR, or had  proved
that  at least one of their parents or grandparents was born   on
said  territory,  and  provided that they were not  citizens   of
another state) by the fact that they had never had firm permanent
legal  relations  with Lithuania; as matter of fact,  they   were
migrants,  who had come from places that were beyond the  borders
of Lithuania, who usually had citizenship of the Soviet Union and
after  restoration  of the independent state of  Lithuania   they
became  foreigners here. It was held in the said   Constitutional
Court  ruling  that Lithuanian citizenship for them was   granted
under  a  rather simplified procedure: they were required to   be
permanent residents in the territory of Lithuania and had to have
here  a permanent job or other permanent legal source of  living;
they had the right within two years after the enforcement of  the
Law on Citizenship (wording of 3 November 1989) to freely  decide
on citizenship, i.e. they could either retain citizenship of  the
Soviet Union or become citizens of Lithuania.
      16.8.  Paragraph 2 of Article 35 of the Law on  Citizenship
(wording  of 3 November 1989) established that during the  period
prior  to  the  full  restoration of the  state  sovereignty   of
Lithuania,  citizens  of  the  Lithuanian  SSR  shall  also   use
passports of the USSR.
      16.9.  The Law on Citizenship (wording of 3 November  1989)
also regulated other relations related to the acquisition,  loss,
return and retention of citizenship of the Lithuanian SSR and  to
decision of other citizenship issues.
      16.10.  It  is  to  be  particularly  emphasized  that   no
provision of the Law on Citizenship (wording of 3 November  1989)
could  be  construed  as  an  obligation of  a  citizen  of   the
Lithuanian  SSR to any other state or citizenship established  by
it; it was expressis verbis entrenched in Paragraph 3 of  Article
35 of this law. 
      17.  On 11 March 1990, the Supreme Council of the  Republic
of  Lithuania  adopted  the Act of the Supreme  Council  of   the
Republic  of  Lithuania "On the Restoration of  the   Independent
State  of Lithuania" by which it declared that the execution   of
the  sovereign  powers  of the State of Lithuania  abolished   by
foreign  forces in 1940, is restored and henceforth Lithuania  is
again an independent state and the constitution of no other state
is valid in Lithuania.
      18.  On  the  same  day the Supreme  Council  adopted   the
Republic  of Lithuania Law "On the Provisional Basic Law of   the
Republic  of Lithuania", by Article 2 of which it confirmed   the
Provisional   Basic  Law  of  the  Republic  of     Lithuania—the
Provisional  Constitution  of the restored independent State   of
Lithuania.  The national legal system was begun to be created  on
the basis of the Provisional Basic Law.
      The  Provisional  Basic  Law also included  provisions   on
Lithuanian  citizenship. Thus, it was established in Article   13
that  the  content  of Lithuanian  citizenship,  conditions   and
procedures  for its acquisition and loss shall be defined by  the
Law on Lithuanian Citizenship (Paragraph 1); as a rule, a citizen
of  Lithuania may not be a citizen of another state at the   same
time (Paragraph 2); Lithuanian citizens abroad shall be  defended
and  protected  by  the State of Lithuania  (Paragraph  3);   and
immigration  to the Republic of Lithuania shall be regulated   by
law (Paragraph 4). 
      19.  Article  3 of the Republic of Lithuania Law  "On   the
Provisional  Basic Law of the Republic of Lithuania"  established
that  the  laws  and other legal acts which had been  in   effect
thitherto  and  which were not in conflict with the   Provisional
Basic  Law  of  the Republic of Lithuania shall continue  to   be
effective.
      It  needs  to be noted that after the restoration  of   the
independent State of Lithuania, most of legal acts that had  been
passed  thitherto  remained effective. The legislator and   other
subjects  of law-making had a constitutional duty to revise   the
corresponding  legal  acts  which had been passed prior  to   the
restoration  of  the  independent  State  of  Lithuania  and   to
harmonize them with the Provisional Basic Law. It had to be  done
within the reasonable and shortest time possible. 
      The  same  is  to  be said about the  Law  on   Citizenship
(wording of 3 November 1989). 
      20.  It  needs to be noted that Article 1 of the 11   March
1990  Law "On the Name of the State and the Coat of Arms"  (which
was  adopted  even before the Republic of Lithuania Law "On   the
Provisional Basic Law of the Republic of Lithuania", by which the
Provisional Basic Law of the Republic of Lithuania was confirmed)
established  that  the  only  official name  of  the   state—"the
Republic  of Lithuania", or its shorter version and in   compound
titles—"Lithuania", "Lithuanian"—must be used in the Constitution
and  other legal normative acts. Thus, since then the former  Law
on Citizenship of the Lithuanian SSR (wording of 3 November 1989)
was  renamed into the Republic of Lithuania Law on   Citizenship,
also changing the former formula "the Lithuanian SSR" of the text
of  this  law  accordingly  so that this law, as a  law  of   the
restored  independent  State  of Lithuania, could  regulate   the
citizenship relations of the Republic of Lithuania.
      21.  In this context it is to be noted that it was held  in
the Constitutional Court ruling of 13 April 1994 that persons who
had  lawfully acquired citizenship of the Republic of   Lithuania
were  considered as having lost citizenship of the Soviet  Union;
with regard to said persons, citizenship of the Soviet Union  was
declared null and void; it meant that consequences of  occupation
and annexation with regard to citizens of Lithuania who had  been
enforced citizenship of the Soviet Union against their will,  had
been eliminated.
      Thus, even though the citizens of the Republic of Lithuania
temporarily  used  the passports of citizens of the USSR   (under
Paragraph 2 (wording of 3 November 1989) of Article 35 of the Law
on  Citizenship),  they could not be treated as citizens of   the
USSR,  i.e. as citizens of the state which had declared them   as
its citizens against their own will.
      22.  On 16 April 1991, the Supreme Council adopted the  Law
"On Supplementing Article 18 of the Republic of Lithuania Law  on
Citizenship", whereby Article 18 (wording of 3 November 1989)  of
the Law on Citizenship was supplemented with Item 4.
      Article  18  (wording of 16 April 1991) was set  forth   as
follows:
      "Citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania shall be lost if:
      1)  A  person  renounces citizenship of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania;
      2)  A person is deprived of citizenship of the Republic  of
Lithuania;
      3)  There  are grounds provided for in  the   international
agreements of the Republic of Lithuania;
      4) A person acquires citizenship of another state."
      23. One is also to mention the following legal acts  passed
by the Supreme Council by which certain provisions of the Law  on
Citizenship (wording of 3 November 1989 together with  subsequent
supplement)  were interpreted and the application procedure   for
certain  provisions  of  this law was established:  the   Supreme
Council  Resolution "On the Application Procedure of Articles   7
and  35  of the Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship" of   19
June  1990  (hereinafter  referred  to as  the  Supreme   Council
resolution  of  19 June 1990), the Supreme Council Law  "On   the
Provisions on the Procedure for Settlement Issues of  Citizenship
of  the  Republic of Lithuania" of 10 July 1990 and the   Supreme
Council Resolution "On the Interpretation of the Fourth Paragraph
of Article 2 of the Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship"  of
31 October 1991. 
      In  this  context it is to be noted that while   construing
Article 7 of the Law on Citizenship (wording of 3 November 1989),
under  which  citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania could   be
granted  to  a citizen of another state by way of exception   and
Paragraph  3 of Article 35, under which no provision of the  said
law shall be interpreted as binding any citizen of the Lithuanian
SSR to the laws on any other state or to citizenship  established
by the said state, in its resolution of 19 June 1990 the  Supreme
Council  held  that: a person, who acquired citizenship  of   the
Republic  of  Lithuania,  shall be considered as  one  who   lost
citizenship  of another state (the first paragraph of Item 1);  a
citizen  of  the Republic of Lithuania may also be a citizen   of
another  state only in the case when citizenship of the  Republic
of  Lithuania was granted to him by way of exception (the   third
paragraph of Item 1).
      Thus,  the Supreme Council resolution of 19 June 1990  once
again  confirmed the prohibition of double citizenship   (arising
from the Provisional Basic Law) (with the exception provided for)
which also had to be heeded while applying the Law on Citizenship
(wording  of 3 November 1989), wherein this prohibition had   not
been entrenched expressis verbis before Article 18 (wording of  3
November 1989) of the Law on Citizenship was supplemented by  the
Law "On Supplementing Article 18 of the Republic of Lithuania Law
on  Citizenship"  and set forth in the new wording of  16   April
1991. 
      24.  It  was mentioned that a two-year period of time   was
established  for  the  "full  implementation"  of  the  Law    on
Citizenship   (wording  of  3  November  1989  with    subsequent
supplement),  after its entry into force, as well as that it  was
related  to  the period of time, during which the   corresponding
persons  had to freely decide on citizenship of the Republic   of
Lithuania.
      Upon expiration of the two-year period on 4 November  1991,
the  Law  on  Citizenship  (wording  of  3  November  1989   with
subsequent supplement) continued to be effective, it did not lose
its validity of its own accord. 
      25.  On 5 December 1991, the Supreme Council adopted a  new
Republic  of Lithuania Law on Citizenship, which had to   replace
the  Law  on  Citizenship  (wording  of  3  November  1989   with
subsequent supplements) which had been in force until then.
      The  Law  on Citizenship (wording of 3 November 1989   with
subsequent  supplement) was recognized as no longer effective  by
Article  3  of the 10 December 1991 Supreme Council Law "On   the
Validity of Documents of Citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania
and Supplement of the Law on Citizenship"; under Article 4 of the
Law "On the Validity of Documents of Citizenship of the  Republic
of Lithuania and Supplement of the Law on Citizenship", this  law
came  into  force  on 11 December 1991. On the same day  (on   10
December  1991)  when the Law "On the Validity of  Documents   of
Citizenship  of the Republic of Lithuania and Supplement of   the
Law on Citizenship" was adopted, the Supreme Council also adopted
the  Resolution  "On  the Procedure for  Implementation  of   the
Republic  of  Lithuania  Law on Citizenship"  (hereinafter   also
referred  to  as the Supreme Council resolution of  10   December
1991), in Item 1 of which it was established that the new Law  on
Citizenship shall come into force on 11 December 1991. 
      26.  The  legal  regulation  entrenched  in  the  Law    on
Citizenship  (wording of 5 December 1991 with supplement made  by
Article 2 of the Law "On the Validity of Documents of Citizenship
of  the  Republic  of  Lithuania and Supplement of  the  Law   on
Citizenship",  which  was adopted by the Supreme Council  on   10
December 1991) in some cases was analogous to the one  entrenched
in  the  Law  on Citizenship (wording of 3  November  1989   with
subsequent  supplement),  while in other respects it   entrenched
essential novels. 
      26.1. Paragraph 1 (wording of 5 December 1991) of Article 1
of the Law on Citizenship established that the following  persons
shall  be citizens of the Republic of Lithuania: (1) persons  who
held  citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania prior to 15   June
1940,  and  their children and grandchildren provided that   they
have  not acquired citizenship of another state; (2) persons  who
were  permanent  residents on the territory of the  Republic   of
Lithuania  in the period from 9 January 1919 to 15 June 1940,  as
well  as their children and grandchildren, provided that on   the
day of entry into force of this law they were permanent residents
in Lithuania, and were not citizens of another state; (3) persons
who  acquired citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania or had  it
restored  to  them  prior to 4 November 1991 under  the  Law   on
Citizenship which had been in force before the enactment of  this
law; (4) persons who implemented the right to citizenship of  the
Republic  of  Lithuania, or had citizenship of the  Republic   of
Lithuania restored to them under this law; and (5) other  persons
who acquired citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania under  this
law. 
      26.2. Article 17 (wording of 5 December 1991) of the Law on
Citizenship   specified  the  persons  to  whom  the  right    to
citizenship  of  the  Republic of Lithuania is retained  for   an
indefinite  period of time: (1) persons who held citizenship   of
the  Republic  of Lithuania until 15 June 1940 and were at   that
time  residing  in  other  states, provided that  they  had   not
repatriated  from  Lithuania; (2) children of persons  who   held
citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania until 15 June 1940,  who
had been born in Lithuania or in refugee camps, but were at  that
time  residing  in  other  states;  and  (3)  other  persons   of
Lithuanian  origin who were residing in foreign states or in  the
territories governed by said states.
      The  institute of retention of the right to citizenship  of
the  Republic of Lithuania was designed for the purpose that  the
persons  (not  only  of Lithuanian origin) who are  residing   in
foreign  states,  who  had held citizenship of the  Republic   of
Lithuania before the loss of Lithuanian statehood, their children
and the Lithuanians residing abroad would not lose the link  with
the restored independent State of Lithuania and that  Lithuanians
residing abroad would not be severed from the Lithuanian Nation.
      26.3.   The  persons  who  were  retained  the  right    to
citizenship  of the Republic of Lithuania, could become  citizens
of  the  Republic of Lithuania in two ways—by  implementing   the
right to citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania or by restoring
citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania (Article 18 (wordings of
5 December 1991 and 10 December 1991)).
      26.3.1.  The  obligatory  condition for the  persons,   who
retained  the right to citizenship of the Republic of  Lithuania,
in  order to implement the said right, was to renounce the   held
citizenship of another state. 
      It  is to be noted that there was no requirement set  forth
to the persons residing in other states, who held citizenship  of
the Republic of Lithuania prior to 15 June 1940 (if they have not
repatriated),  to relocate to Lithuania for permanent   residence
and to make an oath to the Republic of Lithuania. 
      Meanwhile, if the children of the persons residing in other
states who held citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania prior to
15  June  1940 and other persons of Lithuanian origin wanted   to
implement the right to citizenship of the Republic of  Lithuania,
not  only  did  they have to renounce the  held  citizenship   of
another  state, but also to relocate to Lithuania for   permanent
residence and to make an oath to the Republic of Lithuania. 
      26.3.2. Only the persons specified in Paragraph 3  (wording
of  5  December 1991) of Article 18 of the  Law  on  Citizenship—
persons of Lithuanian origin who had citizenship of the  Republic
of Lithuania, and who departed from Lithuania in the period  from
15  June  1940  to 11 March 1990, and are at  the  present   time
residing  in other states—could become citizens of Lithuania   by
way  of  restoration.  In this context, it is to be  noted   that
Article 2 of the Law "On the Validity of Documents of Citizenship
of  the  Republic  of  Lithuania and Supplement of  the  Law   on
Citizenship",  which  was adopted by the Supreme Council  on   10
December  1991, supplemented Paragraph 3 (wording of 10  December
1991)  of  Article 18 of the Law on Citizenship and   established
that  not  only  the  persons  of  Lithuanian  origin  who   held
citizenship  of the Republic of Lithuania, and who departed  from
Lithuania  in the period from 15 June 1940 to 11 March 1990,  and
are  at the present time residing in other states shall have  the
right  to restore citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania,   but
also their children who did not acquire citizenship of this state
by  birth  in  another  state. Thus, the  persons  specified   in
Paragraph 3 (wording of 5 December 1991) of Article 18 of the Law
on  Citizenship  could  restore citizenship of the  Republic   of
Lithuania  by stating in writing to the Ministry of the  Interior
of  the  Republic  of Lithuania or diplomatic  missions  of   the
Republic  of  Lithuania  abroad that they are  citizens  of   the
Republic of Lithuania and providing with the evidence  confirming
it. Under Paragraph 4 (wording of 5 December 1991) of Article  18
of  the  Law on Citizenship, restoration of citizenship  of   the
Republic  of Lithuania under this law would not by itself   bring
about  any legal consequences with regard to the members of   the
family of the person who has had his citizenship restored. 
      Such  institute  of  restoration  of  citizenship  of   the
Republic  of  Lithuania  entrenched in the  Law  on   Citizenship
(wording of 5 December 1991 with supplement made by Article 2  of
the  Law  "On  the Validity of Documents of Citizenship  of   the
Republic of Lithuania and Supplement of the Law on  Citizenship",
which  was  adopted by the Supreme Council on 10 December   1991)
implied that citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania could  also
be restored to the persons who held citizenship of another state.
      26.4.  It needs to be emphasized that Paragraph 1  (wording
of  5  December  1991) of Article 1 of the  Law  on   Citizenship
established that the persons who held citizenship of the Republic
of  Lithuania  prior  to  15 June 1940 and  their  children   and
grandchildren provided that they have not acquired citizenship of
another  state  shall be citizens of the Republic  of   Lithuania
(Item  1).  In  this provision it is not  explicitly   specified,
whether  the  said  persons  were  persons  who  were   permanent
residents  of  Lithuania,  or also persons, who  were   permanent
residents abroad.
      Meanwhile, under Article 17 (wording of 5 December 1991) of
the Law on Citizenship, the right to citizenship of the  Republic
of  Lithuania is retained to persons who held citizenship of  the
Republic  of  Lithuania  prior to 15 June 1940 and  are  at   the
present  time residing in other states, provided that they   have
not  repatriated from Lithuania and children of persons who  held
citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania until 15 June 1940,  who
were  born  in  Lithuania or in refugee camps, but  are  at   the
present time residing in other states.
      When  such  legal regulation is construed   linguistically,
verbatim,  it  would follow that a big part of persons who   held
Lithuanian citizenship prior to 15 June 1940, and their  children
have  a dual legal status: they are citizens of the Republic   of
Lithuania  and they have the right to retain citizenship of   the
Republic of Lithuania at the same time. However, Item 1  (wording
of 5 December 1991) of Paragraph 1 of Article 1 and Paragraphs  1
and  2 (wording of 5 December 1991) of Article 17 of the Law   on
Citizenship  must be construed systemically in the whole  context
of  the  legal regulation established in this law. Then,  it   is
obvious  that the persons specified in Article 17 of the Law   on
Citizenship  are persons residing abroad; even though they   have
the  right  to the retention of citizenship of the  Republic   of
Lithuania,  in  itself they are not citizens of the Republic   of
Lithuania ex lege—in order to become citizens of the Republic  of
Lithuania,  they must express the corresponding intention and  to
implement the requirements established in the Law on  Citizenship
(wording of 5 December 1991 with supplement made by Article 2  of
the  Law  "On  the Validity of Documents of Citizenship  of   the
Republic of Lithuania and Supplement of the Law on  Citizenship",
which  was adopted by the Supreme Council on 10 December   1991).
Thus,  the  persons specified in Item 1 (wording of  5   December
1991)  of Paragraph 1 of Article 1 of the Law on Citizenship  are
persons who permanently reside in Lithuania.
      26.5. Paragraph 2 (wording of 5 December 1991) of Article 1
of  the  Law  on  Citizenship  entrenched  the  provision   which
restricted  double  citizenship:  a citizen of the  Republic   of
Lithuania may not at the same time be a citizen of another state,
except  in  cases provided for in this law. The  restriction   of
double  citizenship  was in various aspects entrenched in   other
articles (paragraphs thereof) of this law too: Item 2 (wording of
5  December 1991) of Article 19, under which citizenship of   the
Republic  of Lithuania is lost, if a person acquires  citizenship
of another state; Article 22 (wording of 5 December 1991),  under
which  citizenship  of  the Republic of Lithuania could  not   be
returned  to the person who lost citizenship of the Republic   of
Lithuania on the basis provided for in Item 2 of Article 19, i.e.
to  the person who acquired citizenship of another state, and  it
could  be  returned only to such person who was stateless  or   a
citizen  of  the  state,  under  the laws  of  which,  he   loses
citizenship of that state upon acquisition of citizenship of  the
Republic  of  Lithuania; and Article 18 (wording of 10   December
1991)  which  established  how the right to citizenship  of   the
Republic  of Lithuania is implemented—it was mentioned that   the
obligatory  condition for the persons, who retained the right  to
citizenship  of the Republic of Lithuania, in order to  implement
the  said right was to renounce the held citizenship of   another
state (Paragraphs 1 and 2 (wording of 5 December 1991)). 
      26.6.  It  was  established in Article 16  (wording  of   5
December 1991) of the Law on Citizenship that citizenship of  the
Republic  of  Lithuania  may be granted to citizens  of   foreign
states  who are with merits to the Republic of Lithuania  without
applying to them conditions of granting citizenship specified  in
Article  12  of  this  law,  thus,  also  without  applying   the
requirement  for a person to be stateless or to be a citizen   of
such  state under the laws of which he loses citizenship of   the
said  state  upon  acquiring  citizenship  of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania,  nor  the  requirement to notify in  writing  of   his
decision  to  renounce citizenship of another state  upon   being
granted  citizenship  of  the Republic of  Lithuania,  which   is
established in Item 5 (wording of 5 December 1991) of Paragraph 1
of  Article  12.  Thus,  a person, to whom  citizenship  of   the
Republic  of Lithuania could be granted for being with merits  to
the  Republic  of Lithuania, could also be a citizen of   another
state at the same time.
      26.7. Article 19 (wording of 5 December 1991) of the Law on
Citizenship  established the grounds for loss of citizenship   of
the Republic of Lithuania: (1) a person renounces citizenship  of
the  Republic of Lithuania; (2) a person acquires citizenship  of
another  state;  (3) a person severs the actual links  with   the
State  of  Lithuania;  and  (4) upon  grounds  provided  for   by
international agreements with the Republic of Lithuania.
      26.8.  The Law on Citizenship (wording of 5 December   1991
with supplement made by Article 2 of the Law "On the Validity  of
Documents  of  Citizenship  of  the Republic  of  Lithuania   and
Supplement  of the Law on Citizenship", which was adopted by  the
Supreme  Council  on  10  December 1991)  also  established   the
procedure for settling citizenship issues.
      26.9. The notion "repatriation" (which was not used in  the
Law  on Citizenship (wording of 3 November 1989 with   subsequent
supplement))  was  used in the Law on Citizenship (wording of   5
December  1991 with supplement made by Article 2 of the Law   "On
the  Validity  of  Documents of Citizenship of the  Republic   of
Lithuania  and Supplement of the Law on Citizenship", which   was
adopted  by the Supreme Council on 10 December 1991)—it was  used
in  Article  17 (wording of 5 December 1991), when defining   the
persons  to  whom  the right to citizenship of the  Republic   of
Lithuania  is  retained  for an indefinite period of  time:   the
persons  who held citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania  prior
to  15 June 1940, were retained the right to citizenship for   an
indefinite period of time only if they had not repatriated. Thus,
the  right  to citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania was   not
retained  to the persons who held citizenship of the Republic  of
Lithuania  prior  to  15  June 1940  and  who  repatriated   from
Lithuania.
      It  is also to be noted that the notion "repatriation"  was
not explicitly defined and no definition thereof was provided  in
the  Law  on  Citizenship  (wording  of  5  December  1991   with
supplement  made  by  Article 2 of the Law "On the  Validity   of
Documents  of  Citizenship  of  the Republic  of  Lithuania   and
Supplement  of the Law on Citizenship", which was adopted by  the
Supreme  Council  on 10 December 1991). It is obvious  from   the
travaux   préparatoires  of  this  law  that  repatriation    was
understood as departure for one's ethnical homeland (even without
relating  such departure with the acquisition of citizenship   of
another state). Such concept of the notion "repatriation" used in
Article 17 (wording of 5 December 1991) is also confirmed by  the
practice of application of this law. 
      27. The procedure for implementation of some provisions  of
the  Law  on  Citizenship  (wording  of  5  December  1991   with
supplement  made  by  Article 2 of the Law "On the  Validity   of
Documents  of  Citizenship  of  the Republic  of  Lithuania   and
Supplement  of the Law on Citizenship", which was adopted by  the
Supreme  Council  on  10 December 1991) was established  in   the
Supreme  Council  resolution  of 10 December 1991. It  was   also
interpreted in the said Supreme Council resolution that in regard
to  persons  specified  in Article 1 of the Law  on   Citizenship
(wording  of  5 December 1991) citizenship of the  Soviet   Union
shall be null and void (Item 7).
      28.  The  legal  regulation  established  in  the  Law   on
Citizenship  (wording of 5 December 1991 with supplement made  by
Article 2 of the Law "On the Validity of Documents of Citizenship
of  the  Republic  of  Lithuania and Supplement of  the  Law   on
Citizenship",  which  was adopted by the Supreme Council  on   10
December  1991) was amended by the Law "On Amending Articles   28
and  31 of the Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship",   which
was adopted by the Supreme Council on 11 February 1992,  however,
the  provisions of the Law on Citizenship (wording of 5  December
1991  with  supplement  made  by Article 2 of the  Law  "On   the
Validity of Documents of Citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania
and  Supplement of the Law on Citizenship", which was adopted  by
the  Supreme  Council  on  10 December 1991)  defining  who   are
citizens  of the Republic of Lithuania, how the retention of  the
right  to citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania is  regulated,
what  are legislative possibilities for citizens of the  Republic
of  Lithuania also to hold citizenship of another state and   how
the relations of loss of citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania
is regulated (in particular, upon acquisition of the  citizenship
of another state), have not been amended. 
      29. Summing up the legal regulation established in the  Law
on Citizenship (wording of 5 December with subsequent  amendments
and  supplements, made prior to the entry into force of the  1992
Constitution), one is to hold that:
      -  the  continuity  of  citizenship  of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania  was  entrenched and it was established as to who   are
citizens  of the Republic of Lithuania after having  consolidated
that  the  corps  of  citizens  of  the  Republic  of   Lithuania
(essentially  dissociating it from citizens of other states)   is
composed  of the following: persons who held citizenship of   the
Republic  of Lithuania prior to 15 June 1940, and their  children
and   grandchildren  provided  that  they  have  not     acquired
citizenship  of  another  state;  persons  who  were    permanent
residents  on the territory of the Republic of Lithuania in   the
period  from  9 January 1919 to 15 June 1940, as well  as   their
children  and  grandchildren, provided that on the day of   entry
into  force  of  this  law  they  were  permanent  residents   in
Lithuania,  and were not citizens of another state; persons   who
acquired  citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania under the  Law
on  Citizenship  (wording  of 3 November  1989  with   subsequent
supplement); persons who acquired citizenship of the Republic  of
Lithuania on other grounds provided for in the Law on Citizenship
(wording of 5 December 1991). 
      -  the  prohibition of double citizenship  was   entrenched
after  having  established  that a citizen of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania may not be also a citizen of another state at the  same
time,  however, this prohibition was not absolute in regard  that
exceptions  were provided for in the Law on Citizenship  (wording
of  5 December 1991 with subsequent amendments and   supplements,
made  prior  to the entry into force of the 1992   Constitution),
when a person, who held citizenship of another state, could  also
be  a  citizen  of the Republic of Lithuania at  the  same   time
(Article 16 (wording of 5 December 1991) and Paragraph 3 (wording
of 10 December 1991) of Article 18);
      - the institute of retention of the right to citizenship of
the Republic of Lithuania was entrenched: it was established what
persons  willing to become citizens of the Republic of  Lithuania
(by  implementing  the right to citizenship of the  Republic   of
Lithuania  or  restoration  of citizenship of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania)  must  express  the corresponding  intention  and   to
implement the requirements established in the Law on  Citizenship
(wording  of  5  December 1991 with  subsequent  amendments   and
supplements,  made  prior  to the entry into force of  the   1992
Constitution);
      -  it was entrenched that the right to citizenship of   the
Republic  of  Lithuania is retained for an indefinite period   of
time  and the right to citizenship of the Republic of   Lithuania
may be implemented not by all persons who held citizenship of the
Republic  of Lithuania prior to 15 June 1940, but only by   those
who  had  not repatriated; thus, in the aspects of retention   of
their  right  to this citizenship and of the  implementation   of
their  right  to citizenship of the Republic of  Lithuania,   the
persons  who held citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania  prior
to  15 June 1940 were grouped according to their ethnical  origin
and  according to the fact for what country—ethnical homeland  or
other  country—they  departed  from  Lithuania:  the  right    to
retention  of  citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania and   the
implementation  of  the right to citizenship of the Republic   of
Lithuania  were  guaranteed only to those said  persons  of  non-
Lithuanian origin who departed from Lithuania, who departed  from
Lithuania not for their ethnical homeland;
      -  one  of  the  grounds for loss of  citizenship  of   the
Republic  of Lithuania was acquisition of citizenship of  another
state. 
      30.  The Lithuanian Nation adopted the Constitution of  the
Republic  of Lithuania in the referendum of 25 October 1992.   It
came  into  force  on 2 November 1992. Under Article  1  of   the
Republic of Lithuania Law "On the Procedure for Entry into  Force
of  the  Constitution  of the Republic of Lithuania"  which   was
adopted  by  the  Nation  in the referendum  together  with   the
Constitution  of  the  Republic  of Lithuania  and  which  is   a
constituent  part of the Constitution, the Provisional Basic  Law
became  no  longer  effective  upon  entry  into  force  of   the
Constitution.  From then on the Lithuanian national legal  system
had  to  be  created and developed only on the  grounds  of   the
Constitution. 
      31.  Article 2 of the Law "On the Procedure for Entry  into
Force of the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania"  provides
that laws, other legal acts or parts thereof which were in effect
in  the  territory  of the Republic of Lithuania  prior  to   the
adoption of the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania,  shall
be  effective  inasmuch  as they are not in  conflict  with   the
Constitution  and this law, and shall remain in force until  they
are  either  declared null and void or brought in line with   the
provisions of the Constitution.
      In  this context it is to be mentioned that as it has  been
held  by  the  Constitutional Court that the  principle  of   the
supremacy  of  the  Constitution  implies also  a  duty  of   the
legislator  and  other lawmaking subjects to revise  legal   acts
which   were  passed  before  the  entry  into  effect  of    the
Constitution, while taking account of norms and principles of the
Constitution,  and to ensure a harmonious hierarchical system  of
legal  acts  which regulate the same  relations   (Constitutional
Court rulings of 3 December 1997, 6 May 1998, 29 October 2003 and
5  March 2004). The Constitutional Court has also held that   the
duty  of the legislator, other lawmaking subjects to revise   all
legal  acts adopted by them before the entry into effect of   the
Constitution and which still remain in force, also the legal acts
adopted  by no longer existing institutions after the entry  into
effect  of the Constitution and still remaining in force,   which
regulate  the  relations  which are assigned to  the  sphere   of
regulation  of  a corresponding law-making subject, as  well   as
legal acts, which had been adopted before the restoration of  the
independent  State  of  Lithuania and remained  in  force   after
restoration of the independent State of Lithuania and, after  the
entry   into   effect   of  the  Constitution,   regulate     the
relationships, which are assigned to the sphere of regulation  of
an  appropriate legislative subject, and assess their  conformity
with  the  Constitution within a reasonably short period,   stems
from  the principle of the superiority of the Constitution,   and
the  constitutional  principle of a state under the rule of   law
(Constitutional   Court   ruling  of  29  October  2003).     The
Constitutional Court has also held that the constitutionality  of
legal  acts  (or parts thereof), which have not been   harmonised
with  the  Constitution  by  passing  a new  legal  act  by   the
corresponding  law-making  subject,  which would amend,  in   the
opinion  of  that  law-making subject, the legal  act  (or   part
thereof)  that was not in conformity with the Constitution,   and
which  have  not  been  recognized as no longer  valid,  may   be
verified  by conducting constitutional control. According to  the
Constitution,  the  Constitutional  Court  decides  as  to    the
conformity of the Republic of Lithuania laws, other acts  adopted
by the Supreme Council, Government acts, which were adopted prior
to the entry into effect of the Constitution, as well as of legal
acts of corresponding legal power, which were adopted before  the
restoration  of the independent State of Lithuania, but  remained
in  force  after  the restoration of the  independent  State   of
Lithuania,  and regulate the relationships that are assigned   to
sphere   of   regulation  of  the  Seimas  or  the     Government
(Constitutional Court ruling of 29 October 2003). 
      32.  Upon entry into force of the Constitution, the Law  on
Citizenship   (wording  of  5  December  1991  with    subsequent
amendments and supplements, made prior to the entry into force of
the 1992 Constitution) remained in force. 
      Also  the Supreme Council Resolution "On the Procedure  for
Implementation  of the Republic of Lithuania Law on  Citizenship"
of 10 December 1991 continued to be in force.
      Thus, the legislator had a constitutional duty to  regulate
the  citizenship relations of the Republic of Lithuania so   that
this  legal  regulation would comply with the provisions of   the
Constitution, inter alia Article 12 thereof.
      33.  Upon entry into force of the Constitution, the Law  on
Citizenship (wording of 5 December with subsequent amendments and
supplements,  made  prior  to the entry into force of  the   1992
Constitution)  was amended and/or supplemented by the  following:
the  Law  "On  Amending Articles 14 and 25 of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania  Law on Citizenship" adopted by the Supreme Council  on
19  November  1992; the Law "On Amending and  Supplementing   the
Republic  of Lithuania Law on Citizenship" adopted by the  Seimas
on 16 July 1993; the Law "On Amending Article 18 of the  Republic
of  Lithuania  Law  on Citizenship" adopted by the Seimas  on   7
December  1993;  the  Law "On Supplementing Article  23  of   the
Republic  of Lithuania Law on Citizenship" adopted by the  Seimas
on  14  December  1993;  the Law "On Amending  the  Republic   of
Lithuania  Law on Citizenship" adopted by the Seimas on 13   June
1995;  the  Law "On Amending and Supplementing the  Republic   of
Lithuania Law on Citizenship" adopted by the Seimas on 3  October
1995; the Republic of Lithuania Law on Supplementing Articles  17
and 22 and Amending Article 31 of the Law on Citizenship  adopted
by  the Seimas on 6 February 1996 and the Republic of   Lithuania
Law  on Amending Articles 1, 17 and 28 of the Law on  Citizenship
adopted by the Seimas on 2 July 1997. 
      Upon entry into force of the Constitution, the 10  December
1991   Supreme   Council  Resolution  "On  the  Procedure     for
Implementation  of the Republic of Lithuania Law on  Citizenship"
has  also been amended and/or supplemented; it has been   amended
and/or  supplemented by: the Seimas Resolution "On Amending   and
Supplementing  the  Resolution  of the Supreme  Council  of   the
Republic of Lithuania 'On the Procedure for Implementation of the
Republic  of Lithuania Law on Citizenship'" of 8 June 1993;   the
Seimas  Resolution "On Amending Item 5 of the Resolution of   the
Supreme  Council of the Republic of Lithuania 'On the   Procedure
for   Implementation  of  the  Republic  of  Lithuania  Law    on
Citizenship'"  of  22 December 1993; the Seimas  Resolution   "On
Amending and Supplementing the Resolution of the Supreme  Council
of the Republic of Lithuania 'On the Procedure for Implementation
of  the  Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship'" of 15   March
1994 (hereinafter also referred to as the Seimas resolution of 15
March 1994); the Seimas Resolution "On Amending and Supplementing
the  Resolution  of  the  Supreme Council  of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania 'On the Procedure for Implementation of the Republic of
Lithuania  Law  on Citizenship' of 10 December 1991" of 18   July
1994 and the Seimas Resolution "On Amending the Resolution of the
Supreme  Council of the Republic of Lithuania 'On the   Procedure
for   Implementation  of  the  Republic  of  Lithuania  Law    on
Citizenship'" of 19 October 1995.
      Subsequently, the amendments and supplements of the Law  on
Citizenship   (wording  of  5  December  1991  with    subsequent
amendments and supplements, made prior to the entry into force of
the  1992 Constitution) and of the Supreme Council resolution  of
10  December  1991, which were mentioned in this   Constitutional
Court  ruling,  will be discussed only in the aspect, how it   is
defined as to who are citizens of the Republic of Lithuania,  how
retention  of  the  right  to citizenship  of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania  is regulated, what legislative possibilities for   the
citizens  of  the  Republic  of  Lithuania  also  to  have    the
citizenship  of other state there are, how the relations of  loss
of  citizenship  of the Republic of Lithuania are regulated   (in
particular,  upon  acquisition  of the  citizenship  of   another
state),  as well as how the content of the notion  "repatriation"
is defined.
      34. Article 2 of the Law "On Amending and Supplementing the
Republic  of Lithuania Law on Citizenship", which was adopted  by
the  Seimas  on 16 July 1993, amended Article 16 (wording  of   5
December  1991) titled "Granting Citizenship of the Republic   of
Lithuania  to Persons with Merits to the State of Lithuania"  and
set  it forth in a new wording (having amended also the title  of
this article). 
      34.1. Article 16 titled "Granting of Citizenship by Way  of
Exception"  (wording of 16 July 1993) of the Law on   Citizenship
established:
      "Following  this  law, the President of the  Republic   may
grant  citizenship  of  the  Republic of  Lithuania  to   foreign
citizens  who are with merits to Lithuania by way  of  exception—
without applying the conditions for granting citizenship provided
for in Article 12 of this Law."
      34.2.  When comparing Article 16 (wording of 16 July  1993)
of  the  Law on Citizenship with the same article (wording of   5
December  1991),  it  is obvious that it  was  established   that
citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania is no longer granted  by
way of exception by the Presidium of the Supreme Council, but  by
the  President  of  the Republic as established in  Item  21   of
Article 84 of the Constitution. 
      34.3.  It  is also obvious that the formula "with   special
merits to the Republic of Lithuania" of Article 16 (wording of  5
December  1991) of the Law on Citizenship was changed into  "with
merits to Lithuania" in this article (wording of 16 July 1993).
      While  construing inter alia Paragraph 2 of Article 12   of
the  Constitution,  wherein  it  is established  that  with   the
exception of individual cases provided for by law, no one may  be
a citizen of both the Republic of Lithuania and another state  at
the same time, the Constitutional Court held the following in its
ruling of 30 December 2003:
      "In  the  course  of  establishment  of  the  grounds    of
acquisition  of  citizenship  of the Republic of  Lithuania   and
regulation   of  the  procedure  of  acquisition  and  loss    of
citizenship,  the  legislator enjoys discretion. However,   while
doing this, the legislator cannot deny the nature and meaning  of
the   institute  of  citizenship,  he  must  pay  heed  to    the
constitutional  requirement  that a citizen of the  Republic   of
Lithuania  may  also  be  a citizen of  another  state  only   in
individual cases established by law. It should be underlined that
the provision of Article 12 of the Constitution that a person may
be a citizen of the Republic of Lithuania and, at the same  time,
a  citizen of another state only in individual cases  established
by law, means that such cases established by law can be very rare
(individual),   that  cases  of  double  citizenship  must     be
extraordinarily rare, exceptional, that under the Constitution it
is  not  permitted to establish any such legal regulation   under
which  cases of double citizenship would be not   extraordinarily
rare   exceptions,  but  a  widespread  phenomenon.  Under    the
Constitution, expansive construction of the provisions of the Law
on  Citizenship consolidating an opportunity to be a citizen   of
the  Republic of Lithuania and a citizen of another state at  the
same time is impermissible, under which double citizenship  would
be  not  individual,  extraordinarily  rare  exceptions,  but   a
widespread  phenomenon". In that Constitutional Court ruling   it
was  also  held that "while one takes account of the  fact   that
citizenship  of  the  Republic  of  Lithuania  expresses    legal
membership  of the person in the State of Lithuania and  reflects
his legal belongingness to the state community, the civil Nation,
the  President of the Republic, when he decides whether to  grant
citizenship  of  the Republic of Lithuania to a person, must   be
guided  by interests of the Nation and the State of   Lithuania";
that "by means of laws or other legal acts one cannot establish a
final list of merits, for which a citizen of a foreign state or a
stateless  person can be granted citizenship of the Republic   of
Lithuania  by way of exception"; that "the merits of the   person
who  requests  to  be  granted citizenship of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania by way of exception must be such and grounded in such a
way so that it would not cause any doubts as to their  presence";
that  "not  any  person, but a citizen of a foreign state  or   a
stateless person must have merits to the State of Lithuania".  It
was also held that "granting of citizenship means that one  holds
that there has appeared a permanent legal link between the person
and  the  state, that such a person has become a member  of   the
state community-the legal Nation. The state, as the  organisation
of  the entire society, cannot be indifferent as to what  persons
become its citizens. Therefore, even in cases when a citizen of a
foreign state or a stateless person has merits to the Republic of
Lithuania and is linked with the State of Lithuania by  permanent
factual  links, is integrated into the Lithuanian society,   when
one  decides  whether  to grant citizenship of the  Republic   of
Lithuania  to such a person by way of exception, one must  assess
all  the  circumstances characterizing such a person,  one   must
follow the interests of the Nation and the State of Lithuania". 
      It was mentioned that Article 16 (wording of 16 July  1993)
of  the Law on Citizenship no longer contains the former  formula
"with  special  merits  to the Republic of  Lithuania"  of   this
article  (wording  of  5 December 1991)—it was replaced  by   the
formula  "with  merits  to Lithuania". It is  obvious  from   the
material of the travaux préparatoires of the Law "On Amending and
Supplementing  the  Law  on  Citizenship  of  the  Republic    of
Lithuania", which was adopted by the Seimas on 16 July 1993,  and
inter  alia from the sittings of the Seimas where the  amendments
to  Article  16  (wording  of 5 December 1991)  of  the  Law   on
Citizenship were deliberated that by these amendments one  sought
inter  alia  to  avoid the detailed legislative  description   of
merits  of the citizen of a foreign state, for which it would  be
possible to grant citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania by way
of  exception, and to retain the powers of the President of   the
Republic  to  decide in every concrete case, whether the   person
(the citizen of a foreign state) is with such merits to Lithuania
that  he may be granted citizenship of the Republic of  Lithuania
by  way  of  exception, without denying at the  same  time   that
citizenship  of the Republic of Lithuania may be granted to   the
citizen  of a foreign state only by way of exception, i.e.   only
for special merits to Lithuania. 
      In  this context it needs to be noted that the formula  "by
way  of  exception"  used in the title and text  of  Article   16
(wording  of  16 July 1993) of the Law on Citizenship is  to   be
construed  by  taking into account that in Lithuanian  the   word
"exceptional"  means "exclusive", "special" and   "extraordinary"
(Lyberis  A. Sinonimų žodynas [Dictionary of Synonyms] 2  patais.
Leidimas.  Vilnius: Lietuvių kalbos instituto leidykla, 2002,  p.
165;  Keinys  S. (vyr. red.) Dabartinės lietuvių kalbos   žodynas
[Contemporary   Lithuanian  Dictionary].  Vilnius:  Mokslo     ir
enciklopedijų leidybos institutas, 2000, p. 235). Thus,  granting
of  citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania by way of  exception
is an exceptional, special and extraordinary case.
      Thus,  irrespective of whether the merits to Lithuania  for
which a citizen of a foreign state may be granted citizenship  of
the  Republic of Lithuania are described as "special" or in   any
other  words  in  the  Law on Citizenship (or  any  other   law),
citizenship  of the Republic of Lithuania may be granted to   the
citizen of a foreign state for them only by way of exception.  It
needs to be noted that the formula "by way of exception" which is
expressis verbis used in Article 16 (wording of 16 July 1993)  of
this law means that the merits of the citizen of a foreign  state
for Lithuania must be exceptional, special and extraordinary. 
      The  provisions of Article 16 (wording of 16 July 1993)  of
the  Law  on  Citizenship, in particular taking account  of   the
intentions  of  the legislator, inter alia of the fact that   the
corresponding amendments corrected the legislative description of
merits to Lithuania and entrenched the powers of the President of
the  Republic  in  this sphere, do not deny  the   constitutional
imperative  that  the  citizen  of  a  foreign  state,  to   whom
citizenship  of  the  Republic of Lithuania is granted  for   his
merits  to Lithuania and who becomes a member of the   Lithuanian
state  community—civil society, must be linked with the State  of
Lithuania by permanent factual links and must be integrated  into
the Lithuanian society. 
      When  construing Paragraph 1 (wording of 16 July 1993)   of
Article 16 (wording of 3 October 1995) of the Law on Citizenship,
the  Constitutional Court held that "in the sense of the Law   on
Citizenship, only the activity of the person is to be  considered
merits  to  the  Republic  of Lithuania, when  the  person   very
significantly   contributes  to  strengthening  of     Lithuanian
statehood,  to  the  increase  of power  of  Lithuania  and   its
authority in the international community, when it is evident that
the  person  has  already been integrated  into  the   Lithuanian
society";  that  "only  in  such  cases  there  may  appear  pre-
conditions for consideration and decision whether the citizen  of
a  foreign  state  or  stateless person is with  merits  to   the
Republic  of Lithuania, as required by the Law on   Citizenship";
that  "while deciding whether the citizen of a foreign state   or
the stateless person has merits to the Republic of Lithuania, one
should,  under  Paragraph  1  of  Article  16  of  the  Law    on
Citizenship,  assess  only the very significant activity to   the
State  of Lithuania itself that it was performed when the  person
was  a  citizen  of  a  foreign state  or  a  stateless   person"
(Constitutional Court ruling of 30 December 2003). 
      Only  when the legal regulation established in Article   16
(wording of 16 July 1993) of the Law on Citizenship is  construed
in  this way, it is in line with the provision of Paragraph 2  of
Article  12  of  the  Constitution that with  the  exception   of
individual cases provided for by law, no one may be a citizen  of
both  the  Republic of Lithuania and another state at  the   same
time.
      35. Paragraph 3 (wording of 10 December 1991) of Article 18
of  the  Law on Citizenship was amended and set forth in  a   new
wording  by  the Law "On Amending Article 18 of the Republic   of
Lithuania Law on Citizenship", which was adopted by the Seimas on
7 December 1993. 
      35.1.  Paragraph 3 (wording of 7 December 1993) of  Article
18 titled "Conditions of Implementing the Right to Citizenship of
the  Republic  of  Lithuania  or Restoring  Citizenship  of   the
Republic of Lithuania" of the Law on Citizenship established:
      "Persons  of Lithuanian origin who held citizenship of  the
Republic of Lithuania prior to 15 June 1940 and their children as
well  as  other persons who held citizenship of the Republic   of
Lithuania prior to 15 June 1940 (provided that all the  specified
persons  have not repatriated), and who departed or were   exiled
from Lithuania in the period from 15 June 1940 to 11 March  1990,
and  are  at  the present time residing in  other  states   shall
restore  citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania by stating   in
writing  to  the  Ministry of the Interior of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania  or  diplomatic missions of the Republic of   Lithuania
abroad  that they are citizens of the Republic of Lithuania   and
providing  the evidence confirming it. They shall not be  applied
the reservations of the first paragraph of this article and  Item
1 of Article 1 of the Law on Citizenship." 
      35.2.  When  comparing Paragraph 3 (wording of 7   December
1993)  of  Article  18 of the Law on Citizenship with  the   same
paragraph (wording of 10 December 1991), it is obvious that under
Paragraph 3 (wording of 7 December 1993) of Article 18 of the Law
on Citizenship, the right to restore citizenship of the  Republic
of  Lithuania without renouncing the held citizenship of  another
state  was  already  established  not only  to  the  persons   of
Lithuanian   origin  who  resided  in  other  states  and    held
citizenship  of  the  Republic of Lithuania  who  departed   from
Lithuania  in the period from 15 June 1940 to 11 March 1990   and
their  children who did not acquire citizenship of this state  by
birth  in another state, but also to other persons of  Lithuanian
origin  residing  in  other states who held citizenship  of   the
Republic  of Lithuania prior to 15 June 1940 and who departed  or
were exiled from Lithuania in the period from 15 June 1940 to  11
March 1990 and their children as well as to other persons of non-
Lithuanian  origin  residing  in other foreign states  who   held
citizenship  of the Republic of Lithuania prior to 15 June   1940
and who departed or were exiled from Lithuania in the period from
15 June 1940 to 11 March 1990. 
      Such legal regulation substantially expanded the circle  of
persons who may restore citizenship of the Republic of  Lithuania
and also hold citizenship of another state. 
      35.3.  On the other hand, the restoration of the right   to
citizenship  of the Republic of Lithuania was related  with  non-
repatriation of the persons who resided in other states and  held
citizenship  of the Republic of Lithuania prior to 15 June  1940:
the right to restore citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania was
guaranteed only to those persons of non-Lithuanian origin who had
departed from Lithuania, who departed from Lithuania not to their
ethnical homeland.
      36. The Law "On Supplementing Article 23 of the Republic of
Lithuania Law on Citizenship", which was adopted by the Seimas on
14  December 1993, supplemented Article 23 titled "Declaring  the
Act  on the Granting of Citizenship of the Republic of  Lithuania
Invalid" (wording of 5 December 1991) by the following  Paragraph
3:
      "A  citizen of the Republic of Lithuania who, after he  has
been  issued  documents  of  citizenship  of  the  Republic    of
Lithuania,  acquires citizenship of another state or is issued  a
passport  of the citizen of another state or any other   document
confirming the citizenship of that state, shall lose  citizenship
of  the  Republic of Lithuania as of the day of  acquisition   of
citizenship of another state or the day of issue of the  passport
of citizenship of that state or any other document confirming the
citizenship of that state."
      37.  Item  1  of the Seimas Resolution of  15  March   1994
supplemented  Item  2  of the Supreme Council resolution  of   10
December  1991  with Paragraphs 2, 3 and 4. Paragraph 4  of   the
Supreme  Council  resolution of 10 December 1991 (wording of   15
March  1994) established that "the persons restoring  citizenship
of the Republic of Lithuania under the Third Paragraph of Article
18  of the Law on Citizenship and the members of their   families
shall  specify in the application for restoration of  citizenship
whether  they  have  not repatriated from  Lithuania  and   shall
provide   evidence   thereof",  and  interpreted   the     notion
"repatriation"  used  in  the Law on Citizenship (wording  of   5
December  1991  with  subsequent  amendments  and   supplements):
"repatriation  is  a departure for one's ethnical  homeland   and
settlement there". 
      37.1. It has been held in this Constitutional Court  ruling
that  upon entry into force of the Constitution, the   legislator
had  a constitutional duty to regulate the citizenship  relations
of  the  Republic of Lithuania, inter alia to correct the   legal
regulation  established in the Law on Citizenship (wording of   5
December  1991 with subsequent amendments and supplements,   made
prior  to the entry into force of the 1992 Constitution) and  the
Supreme  Council Resolution "On the Procedure for  Implementation
of  the Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship" of 10  December
1991  so  that  this  legal regulation  would  comply  with   the
provisions of the Constitution, inter alia Article 12 thereof. 
      37.2.  One  is  to  pay  attention  to  the  fact  that   a
substatutory  act, the Supreme Council resolution of 10  December
1991  (wording  of  15 March 1994), reveals the content  of   the
notion "repatriation" used in the Law on Citizenship (wording  of
5 December 1991 with subsequent amendments and supplements).
      37.2.1.  It is to be noted that the legislator may   define
the content of notions used in laws, however, the requirement  to
heed  the  hierarchy  of  the legal acts which  stems  from   the
Constitution, inter alia the constitutional principle of a  state
under  the rule of law, implies that the content of the   notions
used in laws may be defined (inter alia construed) only by a  law
and not by a legal act of lower power.
      Thus,  it  was  also  possible to define  (inter  alia   to
construe)   the  notion  "repatriation"  used  in  the  Law    on
Citizenship   (wording  of  5  December  1991  with    subsequent
amendments and supplements), taking account of its purpose in the
said  law and of the context of its usage, only by this or  other
law. It is also to be noted that the legal regulation  entrenched
in Article 12 of the Constitution implies that legal relations of
citizenship must be regulated by the law. 
      37.2.2. The fact that it was not possible to define  (inter
alia  to construe) the notion "repatriation" used in the Law   on
Citizenship   (wording  of  5  December  1991  with    subsequent
amendments and supplements), taking account of its purpose in the
said law and of the context of its usage, by a substatutory legal
act stems from the provisions of Article 12 of the Constitution.
      37.2.3.  Taking account of the arguments set forth, one  is
to  draw  a conclusion that the provision "departure  for   one's
ethnical  homeland  and settlement there shall be considered   as
repatriation" of Paragraph 4 (wording of 15 March 1994) of Item 2
of  the  Supreme  Council  Resolution  "On  the  Procedure    for
Implementation  of the Republic of Lithuania Law on  Citizenship"
of 10 December 1991 was in conflict, as to its form, with Article
12 of the Constitution and with the constitutional principle of a
state under the rule of law.
      37.3. It was mentioned that under Article 17 (wording of  5
December  1991),  the  right to citizenship of the  Republic   of
Lithuania  was  retained  for an indefinite period  of  time   to
persons  who held citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania  prior
to 15 June 1940 only provided that they had not repatriated  from
Lithuania,  while  the right to citizenship of the  Republic   of
Lithuania was not retained to the persons who held citizenship of
the  Republic  of Lithuania prior to 15 June 1940 and  who   have
repatriated from Lithuania. 
      It was also mentioned that under Paragraph 3 (wording of  7
December  1993)  of  Article  18  of  the  Law  on   Citizenship,
restoration  of  the  right to citizenship of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania  was related to the non-repatriation of the persons  of
Lithuanian origin who were residing in other states and who  held
citizenship  of the Republic of Lithuania prior to 15 June  1940:
the right to retain citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania  was
guaranteed  only  to the persons of Lithuanian origin  who   were
residing in other states and who held citizenship of the Republic
of  Lithuania prior to 15 June 1940, who departed or were  exiled
from  Lithuania in the period from 15 June 1940 to 11 March  1990
and  their  children  as well as only to other  persons  of  non-
Lithuanian  origin residing in other states who held  citizenship
of  the  Republic  of Lithuania prior to 15 June  1940  and   who
departed or were exiled from Lithuania in the period from 15 June
1940 to 11 March 1990 not to their ethnical homeland. 
      37.3.1. It was mentioned that the notion "repatriation" was
not  explicitly defined in the Law on Citizenship (wording of   5
December 1991 with subsequent amendments and supplements).
      37.3.2.  The  definition  of  the  notion    "repatriation"
entrenched in Paragraph 4 (wording of 15 March 1994) of Item 2 of
the  Supreme  Council resolution of 10 December 1991,  when   one
takes  account of its purpose in the Law on Citizenship  (wording
of  5 December 1991 with subsequent amendments and   supplements)
and  of the context of its usage, implies that one was  following
the  provision that retention of the right to citizenship of  the
Republic  of  Lithuania depended on the ethnical origin  of   the
person  and  on the fact for what country—ethnical  homeland   or
other country—the person departed from Lithuania.
      37.3.3.  It  has  been held in this  Constitutional   Court
ruling  that when regulating citizenship relations one must  also
follow the principle of equal rights of persons. 
      Article  29 of the Constitution provides that all   persons
shall  be  equal  before  the law, the court,  and  other   state
institutions  and officials (Paragraph 1) and that the rights  of
the human being may not be restricted, nor may he be granted  any
privileges on the ground of gender, race, nationality,  language,
origin,  social status, belief, convictions, or views  (Paragraph
2). 
      37.3.4.  The  definition  of  the  notion    "repatriation"
entrenched in Paragraph 4 (wording of 15 March 1994) of Item 2 of
the  Supreme  Council resolution of 10 December 1991,  when   one
takes  account of its purpose in the Law on Citizenship  (wording
of  5 December 1991 with subsequent amendments and   supplements)
and of the context of its usage, deviates from the imperatives of
Article  29 of the Constitution in the aspect that the right   to
the  retention  of  citizenship  of the  Republic  of   Lithuania
(implementation  of the right to citizenship of the Republic   of
Lithuania  and  restoration  of citizenship of the  Republic   of
Lithuania) was restricted to persons of non-Lithuanian origin who
held  citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania prior to 15   June
1940  and who departed for their ethnical homeland and to   their
children. 
      37.3.5.  Taking account of the arguments set forth, one  is
to  draw  a conclusion that the provision "departure  for   one's
ethnical  homeland  and settlement there shall be considered   as
repatriation" of Paragraph 4 (wording of 15 March 1994) of Item 2
of  the  Supreme  Council  Resolution  "On  the  Procedure    for
Implementation  of the Republic of Lithuania Law on  Citizenship"
of  10  December 1991 was in conflict, as to its  content,   with
Article  29  of  the Constitution and  with  the   constitutional
principle of a state under the rule of law.
      37.4.  On 18 July 1994, the Seimas adopted the   Resolution
"On  Amending  and Supplementing the Resolution of  the   Supreme
Council  of  the  Republic of Lithuania 'On  the  Procedure   for
Implementation  of the Republic of Lithuania Law on  Citizenship'
of  10  December  1991", by which it inter alia amended  Item   2
(wording  of  15  March 1994) of the Resolution of  the   Supreme
Council  "On the Procedure for Implementation of the Republic  of
Lithuania  Law on Citizenship" of 10 December 1991; Paragraph   4
(wording  of  15  March 1994) of Item 2 of the  Supreme   Council
Resolution  "On the Procedure for Implementation of the  Republic
of  Lithuania  Law  on Citizenship" of 10 December  1991   became
Paragraph 5 of this item (wording of 18 July 1994). 
      37.4.1. On the grounds of the arguments analogous to  those
upon  which it has been held in this Constitutional Court  ruling
that  the  provision "departure for one's ethnical homeland   and
settlement  there  shall  be  considered  as  repatriation"    of
Paragraph  4 (wording of 15 March 1994) of Item 2 of the  Supreme
Council  Resolution "On the Procedure for Implementation of   the
Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship" of 10 December 1991 was
in conflict, as to its form, with Article 12 of the  Constitution
and  with the constitutional principle of a state under the  rule
of  law, it needs to be held that also the provision   "departure
for  one's  ethnical  homeland  and settlement  there  shall   be
considered  as repatriation" of Paragraph 5 (wording of 18   July
1994)  of  Item  2  of the Supreme Council  Resolution  "On   the
Procedure for Implementation of the Republic of Lithuania Law  on
Citizenship"  of  10  December 1991 was in conflict, as  to   its
content,  with  Article  12  of the Constitution  and  with   the
constitutional principle of a state under the rule of law. 
      37.4.2. On the grounds of the arguments analogous to  those
upon  which it has been held in this Constitutional Court  ruling
that  the  provision "departure for one's ethnical homeland   and
settlement  there  shall  be  considered  as  repatriation"    of
Paragraph  4 (wording of 15 March 1994) of Item 2 of the  Supreme
Council  Resolution "On the Procedure for Implementation of   the
Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship" of 10 December 1991 was
in  conflict,  as  to  its  content,  with  Article  29  of   the
Constitution  and  with the constitutional principle of a   state
under  the  rule  of  law, it needs to be  held  that  also   the
provision  "departure for one's ethnical homeland and  settlement
there  shall  be  considered  as repatriation"  of  Paragraph   5
(wording  of  18  July 1994) of Item 2 of  the  Supreme   Council
Resolution  "On the Procedure for Implementation of the  Republic
of  Lithuania  Law  on Citizenship" of 10 December 1991  was   in
conflict, as to its content, with Article 29 of the  Constitution
and  with the constitutional principle of a state under the  rule
of law. 
      38. In addition, on the grounds of the arguments  analogous
to those upon which it has been held in this Constitutional Court
ruling that the provision "departure for one's ethnical  homeland
and  settlement  there shall be considered as  repatriation"   of
Paragraph  4 (wording of 15 March 1994) of Item 2 of the  Supreme
Council  Resolution "On the Procedure for Implementation of   the
Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship" of 10 December 1991 was
in  conflict,  as  to  its  content,  with  Article  29  of   the
Constitution  and  with the constitutional principle of a   state
under  the  rule  of  law, it needs to be  held  that  also   the
provision  "provided  that  all the specified persons  have   not
repatriated"  of  Paragraph  3 (wording of 7 December  1993)   of
Article 18 of the Law on Citizenship and the provision  "provided
that they have not repatriated from Lithuania" of Item 1 (wording
of 5 December 1991) of Paragraph 1 of Article 17 of this law were
in  conflict  with Article 29 of the Constitution and  with   the
constitutional principle of a state under the rule of law.
      39. Article 1 of the Law "On Amending and Supplementing the
Republic  of Lithuania Law on Citizenship", which was adopted  by
the  Seimas on 3 October 1995, set forth Article 1 (wording of  5
December 1991) of the Law on Citizenship in a new wording. 
      39.1.  Article  1  titled  "Citizens of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania" (wording of 3 October 1995) of the Law on  Citizenship
established:
      "The following persons shall be citizens of the Republic of
Lithuania:
      1)  persons  who  held  citizenship  of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania  prior  to 15 June 1940, and their children   (provided
that  these persons or their children have not repatriated   from
Lithuania);
      2)  grandchildren  of persons who held citizenship of   the
Republic  of  Lithuania prior to 15 June 1940 if they  have   not
acquired citizenship of another state;
      3) persons who were permanent residents on the  present-day
territory  of  the  Republic of Lithuania in the period  from   9
January  1919  to  15 June 1940, as well as their  children   and
grandchildren, provided that on the day of coming into effect  of
the  Law  on Citizenship they have been permanent  residents   in
Lithuania,  are  residing here at the present time and  are   not
citizens of another state;
      4) persons of Lithuanian origin residing in other states if
they  departed from Lithuania prior to 16 February 1918 and  have
not acquired citizenship of another state;
      5)  persons  who acquired citizenship of the  Republic   of
Lithuania  under the Law on Citizenship which had been in  effect
prior  to the enactment of the Law on Citizenship on 5   December
1991; and
      6)  other  persons  who have acquired citizenship  of   the
Republic of Lithuania under the Law on Citizenship.
      Persons  specified  in  Item 1 hereof shall  be  at   their
request issued passports of citizens of the Republic of Lithuania
or documents confirming the right to citizenship of the  Republic
of Lithuania in accordance with Article 17 of this Law.
      A citizen of the Republic of Lithuania may not at the  same
time be a citizen of another state, except in cases provided  for
in this Law." 
      39.2. Paragraph 1 (wording of 3 October 1995) of Article  1
of  the  Law  on Citizenship is to be construed by  taking   into
account  of  inter  alia  the fact that Article 7  the  Law   "On
Amending  and  Supplementing  the Republic of Lithuania  Law   on
Citizenship", which was adopted by the Seimas on 3 October  1995,
set  forth Article 17 (wording of 5 December 1991) of the Law  on
Citizenship in a new wording. 
      39.3.  Article  17  titled  "Retention  of  the  Right   to
Citizenship  of the Republic of Lithuania" (wording of 3  October
1995) of the Law on Citizenship established:
      "The  right  to citizenship of the Republic  of   Lithuania
shall be retained for an indefinite period of time for:
      
      1)  persons  who  held  citizenship  of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania  prior to 15 June 1940 and to their children  (provided
that  said persons and their children have not repatriated   from
Lithuania) who are residing in other states; and
      2)  persons of Lithuanian origin who are residing in  other
states.
      A  person  whose  parents or grandparents, or one  of   the
parents  or grandparents are Lithuanians and the person   himself
admits that he considers himself Lithuanian shall be considered a
person of Lithuanian origin.
      Persons  for whom the right to citizenship of the  Republic
of  Lithuania  is  retained shall, at their request,  be   issued
documents confirming the right.
      Said  persons together with members of their families   may
enter  the  Republic  of Lithuania without visas and  reside   in
Lithuania  without  having  the  requirements  of  the  Law    on
Immigration  applied to them, as well as depart from   Lithuania.
Laws may also provide for other rights of said persons.
      Persons  specified  in Item 1 of Paragraph 1 hereof   shall
implement  the right to citizenship of the Republic of  Lithuania
in accordance with Article 1 of this Law.
      Persons  specified  in Item 2 of Paragraph 1 hereof   shall
implement  the right to citizenship of the Republic of  Lithuania
after  they renounce citizenship of another state and return   to
Lithuania for permanent residence."
      39.4.  It  was  mentioned that the  persons  specified   in
Article 17 (wording of 5 December 1991) of the Law on Citizenship
are  persons residing abroad; even though they have the right  to
retention  of citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania, they  are
not  citizens of the Republic of Lithuania ex lege of their   own
accord—in order to become citizens of the Republic of  Lithuania,
they  must express the corresponding intention and to   implement
the  requirements established in the Law on Citizenship  (wording
of  5 December 1991 with supplement made by Article 2 of the  Law
"On  the Validity of Documents of Citizenship of the Republic  of
Lithuania  and Supplement of the Law on Citizenship", which   was
adopted by the Supreme Council on 10 December 1991). 
      The amendment to Article 17 (wording of 5 December 1991) of
the  Law  on  Citizenship, which was made by Article  7  of   the
Resolution  "On  Amending and Supplementing of the  Republic   of
Lithuania Law on Citizenship" adopted by the Seimas on 3  October
1995,  did not change the principled provision that the   persons
who  have  the  right  to the retention of  citizenship  of   the
Republic  of  Lithuania  are  not citizens of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania  ex lege of their own accord—they could implement   the
right to citizenship under Article 17 (wording of 3 October 1995)
of the Law on Citizenship. 
      39.5. It needs to be emphasized that under Item 1  (wording
of  3  October 1995) of Paragraph 1 of Article 1 of the  Law   on
Citizenship, the persons who held citizenship of the Republic  of
Lithuania  prior  to 15 June 1940, and their children   (provided
that  these persons or their children have not repatriated   from
Lithuania)  no  longer had to renounce the held  citizenship   of
another state when implementing their right to citizenship of the
Republic of Lithuania.
      Thus, such legal regulation expanded the circle of  persons
who  may implement their right to citizenship of the Republic  of
Lithuania and also hold citizenship of another state.
      39.6. While construing the provision "the following persons
shall  be citizens of the Republic of Lithuania: (1) persons  who
held  citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania prior to 15   June
1940,  and their children (provided that these persons or   their
children  have  not repatriated from Lithuania)" of Paragraph   1
(wording  of  3  October  1995)  of Article  1  of  the  Law   on
Citizenship together with Paragraph 2 of this article, wherein it
is established that "persons specified in Item 1 hereof shall  be
at their request issued passports of citizens of the Republic  of
Lithuania or documents confirming the right to citizenship of the
Republic of Lithuania in accordance with Article 17 of this  Law"
as  well as with Article 17 (wording of 3 October 1995) of   this
law,  it  is obvious that the provision of Item 1 (wording of   3
October  1995)  of  Paragraph  1  of Article 1  of  the  Law   on
Citizenship  also includes the persons who permanently reside  in
Lithuania and persons who permanently reside abroad.
      The  provision "the following persons shall be citizens  of
the  Republic of Lithuania: (1) persons who held citizenship   of
the  Republic  of  Lithuania prior to 15 June  1940,  and   their
children (provided that these persons or their children have  not
repatriated from Lithuania)" of Paragraph 1 (wording of 3 October
1995)  of Article 1 of the Law on Citizenship is to be  construed
as meaning that citizens of the Republic of Lithuania ex lege are
those  from  among  the  persons  specified  in  this  item   who
permanently  reside  in Lithuania as well as those  persons   who
permanently  reside  abroad  that  implemented  their  right   to
citizenship  of  the  Republic  of Lithuania  under  Article   17
(wording of 3 October 1995) of the Law on Citizenship. 
      In this context it is to be mentioned that the provision of
Paragraph  2 (wording of 3 October 1995) of Article 1 of the  Law
on Citizenship that persons specified in Item 1 of Paragraph 1 of
this  law (i.e. persons who held citizenship of the Republic   of
Lithuania  prior  to 15 June 1940, and their children   (provided
that  these persons or their children have not repatriated   from
Lithuania))  shall  be  at  their request  issued  passports   of
citizens of the Republic of Lithuania or documents confirming the
right  to citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania in  accordance
with  Article 17 of this law cannot be construed as meaning  that
being  a citizen of the Republic of Lithuania depends on  whether
the  person was issued a passport of the citizen of the  Republic
of  Lithuania  or other document confirming citizenship  of   the
Republic of Lithuania. 
      39.7.  When  comparing Paragraph 1 (wording of  3   October
1995)  of  Article 1 of the Law on Citizenship with Paragraph   1
(wording  of  5  December  1991)  of Article 1  of  the  Law   on
Citizenship  it is obvious that under Paragraph 1 (wording of   3
October 1995) of Article 1 of the Law on Citizenship, citizens of
the  Republic  of  Lithuania  are  not  only  persons  who   held
citizenship  of the Republic of Lithuania prior to 15 June   1940
and  their  children  provided  that  they  have  not    acquired
citizenship  of  another  state;  persons  who  were    permanent
residents  on  the  present-day  territory of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania  in the period from 9 January 1919 to 15 June 1940,  as
well  as their children and grandchildren, provided that on   the
day  of  coming into effect of the Law on Citizenship they   have
been  permanent residents in Lithuania, are residing here at  the
present  time and are not citizens of another state; persons  who
acquired  citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania under the  Law
on  Citizenship  (wording  of 3 November  1989  with   subsequent
supplementing) and other persons who have acquired citizenship of
the Republic of Lithuania on other basis provided for in the  Law
on Citizenship, but also:
      - persons of Lithuanian origin residing in other states  if
they  departed from Lithuania prior to 16 February 1918 and  have
not acquired citizenship of another state;
      - persons who held citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania
prior  to  15  June  1940,  and  their  children  who    acquired
citizenship  of  another state, provided these persons or   their
children did not repatriate from Lithuania. 
      In this context, it is to be emphasized that, as mentioned,
those  persons who held citizenship of the Republic of  Lithuania
prior  to  15 June 1940, and their children provided that   these
persons  and  the  children  thereof have  not  repatriated   and
acquired citizenship of another state could implement their right
to  citizenship  of the Republic of Lithuania under  Article   17
(wording of 3 October 1995) of the Law on Citizenship; under Item
1 (wording of 3 October 1995) of Paragraph 1 of Article 1 of  the
Law  on  Citizenship  they no longer had to  renounce  the   held
citizenship of another state.
      39.8. Moreover, Paragraph 1 (wording of 3 October 1995)  of
Article 1 of the Law on Citizenship no longer included the former
provision  of  Item  4  (wording of 5  December  1991)  of   this
paragraph  that  the following persons shall be citizens of   the
Republic of Lithuania: "persons who have implemented the right to
citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania or restored  citizenship
of  the  Republic  of  Lithuania under this  Law",  however,   it
continued to include the former provision of Item 5 (wording of 5
December 1991) of this paragraph that the following persons shall
be citizens of the Republic of Lithuania: "other persons who have
acquired citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania under this  Law
";  after  having  made  some amendments in  the  wording,   this
provision was entrenched in Item 6 (wording of 3 October 1995) of
Paragraph 1 of Article 1 of the Law on Citizenship.
      39.8.1. In this context it is to be noted that Article 8 of
the Law "On Amending and Supplementing the Republic of  Lithuania
Law on Citizenship", which was adopted by the Seimas on 3 October
1995,  recognized  Article  18 of the Law on Citizenship  as   no
longer  valid. Thus, the institute of restoration of  citizenship
of the Republic of Lithuania was no longer included in the Law on
Citizenship   (wording  of  5  December  1991  with    subsequent
amendments and supplements). 
      39.8.2.  Taking  account of inter alia the fact that   upon
coming  into force of the Law "On Amending and Supplementing  the
Republic  of Lithuania Law on Citizenship" adopted on 3   October
1995 by the Seimas the Law on Citizenship (wording of 5  December
1991  with  subsequent  amendments and  supplements)  no   longer
included  the institute of restoration of citizenship, one is  to
hold  that  the  provision  "other  persons  who  have   acquired
citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania under this Law" of  Item
6 (wording of 3 October 1995) of Paragraph 1 of Article 1 of  the
Law on Citizenship also included the persons who had  implemented
the  right  to citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania  or   had
restored  citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania under Item   4
(wording  of 5 December 1991) of Paragraph 1 of Article 1 of  the
Law on Citizenship.
      39.9.  The  provision  "the  following  persons  shall   be
citizens  of  the  Republic of Lithuania: (1) persons  who   held
citizenship  of the Republic of Lithuania prior to 15 June  1940,
and their children (provided that these persons or their children
have not repatriated from Lithuania)" of Paragraph 1 (wording  of
3  October 1995) of Article 1 of the Law on Citizenship and   the
provision "the right to citizenship of the Republic of  Lithuania
shall  be  retained  for an indefinite period of time  for:   (1)
persons  who held citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania  prior
to 15 June 1940 and to their children (provided that said persons
and their children have not repatriated from Lithuania)" of  Item
1  (wording  of 3 October 1995) of Paragraph 1 of Article 17   of
this law mean that the implementation of the right to citizenship
of the Republic of Lithuania of the persons who held  citizenship
of  the  Republic of Lithuania prior to 15 June 1940, and   their
children   was  related  to  their  and  their  children's   non-
repatriation:  the  implementation of this right was   guaranteed
only  to  those of the specified persons and their children   who
were of non-Lithuanian origin and who departed from Lithuania not
to their ethnical homeland. 
      39.10.  On the grounds of the arguments analogous to  those
upon  which it has been held in this Constitutional Court  ruling
that  the  provision "departure for one's ethnical homeland   and
settlement  there  shall  be  considered  as  repatriation"    of
Paragraph  4 (wording of 15 March 1994) of Item 2 of the  Supreme
Council  Resolution "On the Procedure for Implementation of   the
Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship" of 10 December 1991 was
in  conflict,  as  to  its  content,  with  Article  29  of   the
Constitution  and  with the constitutional principle of a   state
under  the  rule  of  law, it needs to be  held  that  also   the
provision "provided that these persons or their children have not
repatriated from Lithuania" of Item 1 (wording of 3 October 1995)
of  Paragraph  1 of Article 1 of the Law on Citizenship and   the
provision "provided that said persons or their children have  not
repatriated from Lithuania" of Item 1 (wording of 3 October 1995)
of  Paragraph 1 of Article 17 of this law were in conflict   with
Article  29  of  the Constitution and  with  the   constitutional
principle of a state under the rule of law. 
      40. Article 6 of the Law "On Amending and Supplementing the
Republic  of Lithuania Law on Citizenship", which was adopted  by
the Seimas on 3 October 1995, supplemented Article 16 (wording of
16 July 1993) of the Law on Citizenship with Paragraph 2. 
      Paragraph  2  (wording  of 3 October 1995) of  Article   16
titled  "Granting of Citizenship by Way of Exception" of the  Law
on  Citizenship  established:  "Granting of citizenship  of   the
Republic  of  Lithuania by way of exception shall not by   itself
bring  about  legal consequences with regard to the  members   of
family of the person who has acquired citizenship". 
      41. On 19 October 1995, the Seimas adopted the Republic  of
Lithuania  Law  "On  the  Procedure for  Implementation  of   the
Republic  of Lithuania Law on Citizenship" which came into  force
on  4  November  1995.  Paragraph 3 of Article  1  of  this   law
established:   "Departure  for  one's  ethnical  homeland     and
settlement there shall be considered as repatriation". 
      Thus, the content of the notion "repatriation" was  defined
in  the same way as in Paragraph 4 (wording of 15 March 1994)  of
Item  2 of the Supreme Council Resolution "On the Procedure   for
Implementation  of the Republic of Lithuania Law on  Citizenship"
of 10 December 1991 and in Paragraph 5 (wording of 15 March 1994)
of this item. 
      42.  On the same day (19 October 1995), the Seimas  adopted
the Resolution "On Amending the Resolution of the Supreme Council
of the Republic of Lithuania 'On the Procedure for Implementation
of  the Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship'" whose Item   1
inter  alia  recognized Item 2 (wording of 18 July 1994) of   the
Supreme  Council Resolution "On the Procedure for  Implementation
of  the Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship" of 10  December
1991 as no longer valid. 
      43.  It has been held in this Constitutional Court   ruling
that  the  provision "departure for one's ethnical homeland   and
settlement  there  shall  be  considered  as  repatriation"    of
Paragraph  4 (wording of 15 March 1994) of Item 2 of the  Supreme
Council  Resolution "On the Procedure for Implementation of   the
Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship" of 10 December 1991 was
in  conflict,  as  to  its  content,  with  Article  29  of   the
Constitution  and  with the constitutional principle of a   state
under the rule of law. 
      44. On the grounds of the arguments analogous to those upon
which  it has been held in this Constitutional Court ruling  that
the  provision  "departure  for  one's  ethnical  homeland    and
settlement  there  shall  be  considered  as  repatriation"    of
Paragraph  4 (wording of 15 March 1994) of Item 2 of the  Supreme
Council  Resolution "On the Procedure for Implementation of   the
Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship" of 10 December 1991 was
in  conflict,  as  to  its  content,  with  Article  29  of   the
Constitution  and  with the constitutional principle of a   state
under the rule of law, it needs to be held that also Paragraph  3
(wording  of  19 October 1995) of Article 1 of the Law  "On   the
Procedure for Implementation of the Republic of Lithuania Law  on
Citizenship" was in conflict with Article 29 of the  Constitution
and  with the constitutional principle of a state under the  rule
of law. 
      45.  Article 1 of the Law on Supplementing Articles 17  and
22  and Amending Article 31 of the Law on Citizenship, which  was
adopted by the Seimas on 6 February 1996, supplemented  Paragraph
1  (wording of 3 October 1995) of Article 17 of this law and  set
it forth in a new wording. 
      45.1.  Paragraph 1 (wording of 6 February 1996) of  Article
17 titled "Retention of the Right to Citizenship of the  Republic
of Lithuania" of the Law on Citizenship established:
      "The  right  to citizenship of the Republic  of   Lithuania
shall be retained for an indefinite period of time for:
      (1)  persons  who  held  citizenship of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania  prior to 15 June 1940 and to their children  (provided
that  said persons and their children have not repatriated   from
Lithuania) who are residing in other states; and
      (2) persons of Lithuanian origin who are residing in  other
states."
      45.2.  When  Paragraph 1 (wording of 6 February  1996)   of
Article 17 of the Law on Citizenship is compared with Paragraph 1
(wording  of  3  October  1995)  of Article 17  of  the  Law   on
Citizenship,  it  becomes  obvious  that Item 1  (wording  of   6
February 1996) of Paragraph 1 of this article retained the former
provision  that  the  right to citizenship of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania  shall  be retained for an indefinite period  of   time
inter alia to the persons who held citizenship of the Republic of
Lithuania  prior to 15 June 1940 and to their children  (provided
that  said  persons or their children have not repatriated   from
Lithuania),  however,  it was explicitly established that   these
persons are persons who reside in other states. 
      45.3.  On the grounds of the arguments analogous to   those
upon  which it has been held in this Constitutional Court  ruling
that  the  provision "departure for one's ethnical homeland   and
settlement  there  shall  be  considered  as  repatriation"    of
Paragraph  4 (wording of 15 March 1994) of Item 2 of the  Supreme
Council  Resolution "On the Procedure for Implementation of   the
Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship" of 10 December 1991 was
in  conflict,  as  to  its  content,  with  Article  29  of   the
Constitution  and  with the constitutional principle of a   state
under  the  rule  of  law, it needs to be  held  that  also   the
provision "provided that said persons and their children have not
repatriated  from  Lithuania" of Item 1 (wording of  6   February
1996) of Paragraph 1 of Article 17 of the Law on Citizenship  was
in  conflict  with Article 29 of the Constitution and  with   the
constitutional principle of a state under the rule of law. 
      46.  It was mentioned that under Article 22 (wording of   5
December  1991)  of the Law on Citizenship, citizenship  of   the
Republic  of  Lithuania could not be returned to the person   who
lost  citizenship  of  the Republic of Lithuania  on  the   basis
provided  for  in  Item 2 of Article 19, i.e. to  a  person   who
acquired  citizenship of another state, and it could be  returned
only to such person who was stateless or a citizen of the  state,
under the laws of which, he loses citizenship of that state  upon
acquisition of citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania. 
      Article  2 of the Law on Supplementing Articles 17 and   22
and  Amending  Article 31 of the Law on Citizenship,  which   was
adopted by the Seimas on 6 February 1996, supplemented Article 22
of  the  Law on Citizenship and set it forth in a  new   wording.
Article  22 titled "Returning of Citizenship of the Republic   of
Lithuania"  of the Law on Citizenship provided for a  possibility
to  return citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania also to   the
person  who lost citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania   inter
alia  on the basis provided for in Item 2 (wording of 5  December
1991)  of  Article  19  of this law, i.e.  upon  acquisition   of
citizenship  of  another state, but only if at the time  of   his
application  this person permanently resides in the territory  of
the Republic of Lithuania and fulfils the conditions provided for
in  Items 2, 3 and 5 (wording of 5 December 1991) of Paragraph  1
of Article 12 (wording of 3 October 1995) of this law, inter alia
the  condition  not to hold citizenship of another state or   the
condition to renounce the held citizenship of another state. 
      47. Article 1 of the Law on Amending Articles 1, 17 and  28
of  the Law on Citizenship, which was adopted by the Seimas on  2
July  1997,  amended Paragraph 1 (wording of 3 October 1995)   of
Article  1  of the Law on Citizenship and set it forth in a   new
wording. 
      47.1. Paragraph 1 (wording of 2 July 1997) of Article 1  of
the  Law  on Citizenship established that the following   persons
shall  be citizens of the Republic of Lithuania: (1) persons  who
held  citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania prior to 15   June
1940,  their  children  and grandchildren (provided  that   these
persons  or their children or grandchildren have not  repatriated
from Lithuania); (2) persons who were permanent residents in  the
present-day territory of the Republic of Lithuania in the  period
from  9 January 1919 to 15 June 1940, as well as their   children
and grandchildren, provided that on the day of coming into effect
of  the Law on Citizenship they have been permanent residents  in
Lithuania,  are  residing here at the present time and  are   not
citizens  of  another  state; (3) persons of  Lithuanian   origin
residing  in other states, if they departed from Lithuania  prior
to  16 February 1918 and did not acquire citizenship of   another
state;  (4) persons who acquired citizenship of the Republic   of
Lithuania  by 4 November 1991 under the Law on Citizenship  which
had  been  in  effect  prior  to the enactment  of  the  Law   on
Citizenship  on 5 December 1991; and (5) other persons who   have
acquired  citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania under the  Law
on Citizenship. 
      47.2. Paragraph 1 (wording of 2 July 1997) of Article 1  of
the  Law on Citizenship is to be construed taking account   inter
alia  of the fact that Article 2 of the Law on Amending  Articles
1, 17 and 28 of the Law on Citizenship (wording of 2 July  1997),
which  was  adopted by the Seimas, amended Item 1 (wording of   6
February  1996)  of  Paragraph  1 of Article 1  of  the  Law   on
Citizenship and set it forth in a new wording. 
      47.3.  Item  1 (wording of 2 July 1997) of Paragraph 1   of
Article  17 of the Law on Citizenship established that the  right
to citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania shall be retained for
an  indefinite period of time to persons who held citizenship  of
the  Republic  of  Lithuania  prior to 15 June  1940,  to   their
children  and  grandchildren (provided that said persons,   their
children  and grandchildren have not repatriated from  Lithuania)
who are residing in other states. 
      47.4. When the legal regulation established in Paragraph  1
(wording  of 2 July 1997) of Article 1 of the Law on  Citizenship
is compared with the one established in Paragraph 1 (wording of 3
October  1995) of Article 1 of the Law on Citizenship, and   when
one takes account of the provisions of Item 1 (wording of 2  July
1997) of Paragraph 1 of Article 17 of the Law on Citizenship,  it
becomes  obvious  that under Item 1 (wording of 2 July 1997)   of
Paragraph  1  of  Article  17 of the  Law  on  Citizenship,   the
possibility  to be citizens of the Republic of Lithuania at   the
same  time  holding  citizenship  of  another  state  was    also
established to grandchildren (provided that said persons have not
repatriated  from Lithuania) of the persons who held  citizenship
of the Republic of Lithuania prior to 15 June 1940. 
      47.5. It is also to be noted that Article 1 of the Republic
of Lithuania Law on Amending Articles 1 and 5 of the Law "On  the
Procedure for Implementation of the Republic of Lithuania Law  on
Citizenship",  which  was adopted by the Seimas on 2 July   1997,
amended Article 1 (wording of 19 October 1995) of the Law "On the
Procedure for Implementation of the Republic of Lithuania Law  on
Citizenship" and set it forth in a new wording. 
      After this amendment had been made, the provision  defining
the content of the notion "repatriation" in Paragraph 3  (wording
of  2  July 1997) of Article 1 of the Law "On the Procedure   for
Implementation  of the Republic of Lithuania Law on  Citizenship"
remained the same as in Paragraph 3 (wording of 19 October  1995)
of  Article 1 of the Law "On the Procedure for Implementation  of
the  Republic  of Lithuania Law on Citizenship": "Departure   for
one's ethnical homeland and settlement there shall be  considered
as repatriation." 
      47.6. The Law on Amending Articles 1, 17 and 28 of the  Law
on  Citizenship, which was by the Seimas adopted on 2 July  1997,
and  the  Law  on Amending Articles 1 and 5 of the  Republic   of
Lithuania  Law  "On  the  Procedure for  Implementation  of   the
Republic  of Lithuania Law on Citizenship", which was adopted  on
the  same day, also came into effect on the same day, i.e. on  16
July 1997. 
      47.7.  On the grounds of the arguments analogous to   those
upon  which it has been held in this Constitutional Court  ruling
that  the  provision "departure for one's ethnical homeland   and
settlement  there  shall  be  considered  as  repatriation"    of
Paragraph  4 (wording of 15 March 1994) of Item 2 of the  Supreme
Council  Resolution "On the Procedure for Implementation of   the
Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship" of 10 December 1991 was
in  conflict,  as  to  its  content,  with  Article  29  of   the
Constitution  and  with the constitutional principle of a   state
under  the  rule  of  law, it needs to be  held  that  also   the
provision   "provided  that  the  persons,  their  children    or
grandchildren  have  not repatriated from Lithuania" of  Item   1
(wording  of 2 July 1997) of Paragraph 1 of Article 1 of the  Law
on Citizenship, the provision "provided that said persons,  their
children or grandchildren have not repatriated from Lithuania" of
Item  1 (wording of 2 July 1997) of Paragraph 1 of Article 17  of
this law and Paragraph 3 (wording of 2 July 1997) of Article 1 of
the  Law "On the Procedure for Implementation of the Republic  of
Lithuania Law on Citizenship" were in conflict with Article 29 of
the Constitution and with the constitutional principle of a state
under the rule of law. 
      48.  Summing  up  what possibilities for citizens  of   the
Republic  of Lithuania also to have citizenship of another  state
were entrenched in the Law on Citizenship (wording of 5  December
1991 with subsequent amendments and supplements) at the time when
the  Constitution was already in effect, one is to hold that  the
principle  of prohibition of double citizenship, prohibiting  the
person from being a citizen of the Republic of Lithuania and  any
other  state  at  the same time, as well as exceptions  to   this
prohibition, has always been entrenched in this law. 
      48.1.  The Law on Citizenship (wording of 5 December   with
subsequent  amendments and supplements, made prior to the   entry
into  force  of  the  1992  Constitution)  entrenched  only   two
exceptions  to the said prohibition of double citizenship:  under
Article  16 (wording of 5 December 1991) of this law, a   person,
who could be granted citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania for
special  merits to the Republic of Lithuania, could at the   same
time be a citizen of another state; under Paragraph 3 (wording of
10  December  1991)  of Article 18 of the said law,  persons   of
Lithuanian  origin  who  held  citizenship of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania, and who departed from Lithuania in the period from  15
June 1940 to 11 March 1990, and are at the present time  residing
in other states, as well as their children who have not  acquired
citizenship  of  another  state  by  birth,  could  have    their
citizenship  of  the  Republic  of  Lithuania  restored   without
renouncing the held citizenship of another state. 
      48.2.  When  establishing  the basis  for  acquisition   of
citizenship  of the Republic of Lithuania and the procedure   for
its loss, the legislator must heed the requirement of Paragraph 2
of  Article  12 of the Constitution that with the  exception   of
individual cases provided for by law, no one may be a citizen  of
both  the  Republic of Lithuania and another state at  the   same
time;  such  cases  provided for by law may be  only  very   rare
(individual), exceptional, but not common ones. 
      48.3. In this respect, the exception to the prohibition  of
double  citizenship  entrenched  in  Article 16  (wording  of   5
December  1991)  of the Law on Citizenship was in line with   the
requirements of Paragraph 2 of Article 12 of the Constitution. 
      Differently  is  to  be  assessed  the  exception  to   the
prohibition  of  double  citizenship entrenched in  Paragraph   3
(wording  of  10  December  1991) of Article 18 of  the  Law   on
Citizenship—taking  account of the fact that the requirement   to
renounce  the held citizenship of another state when  citizenship
of  the  Republic  of  Lithuania  was  being  restored  was   not
established,  this  exception created preconditions  for   double
citizenship  to  become not an especially rare exception, but   a
widespread phenomenon. 
      48.4.  The Law on Citizenship (wording of 5 December   with
subsequent  amendments and supplements, made prior to the   entry
into force of the 1992 Constitution) entrenched the institute  of
retention  of  the  right  to citizenship  of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania which, as it has been held in this Constitutional Court
ruling,  was designed for the purpose that the persons (not  only
of Lithuanian origin) who are residing in foreign states, who had
citizenship  of  the  Republic of Lithuania before the  loss   of
Lithuanian statehood, their children and the Lithuanians residing
abroad  would  not lose the link with the  restored   independent
State of Lithuania and that Lithuanians residing abroad would not
be severed from the Lithuanian Nation.
      There  is  not  any legal ground to think  that  the   said
institute  of  retention  of  the right to  citizenship  of   the
Republic of Lithuania could in any aspect be in conflict with any
provisions  of  the  Constitution, save the fact that  that   the
persons  who  repatriated from Lithuania were excluded from   all
those  persons who held citizenship of the Republic of  Lithuania
prior to 15 June 1940 and were residing in other states—the right
to  citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania was not retained  to
them.  It has been held in this Constitutional Court ruling  that
the  provision "provided that said persons have not   repatriated
from  Lithuania"  of  Item  1 (wording of 5  December  1991)   of
Paragraph  1  of  Article 17 of the Law on  Citizenship  was   in
conflict  with  Article  29  of the Constitution  and  with   the
constitutional principle of a state under the rule of law. 
      48.5.  In  the  long run, the circle of persons  who   were
retained  the right to citizenship of the Republic of   Lithuania
was  expanded: not only the persons who held citizenship of   the
Republic  of  Lithuania until 15 June 1940 and were residing   in
other  states  (provided  that they have  not  repatriated   from
Lithuania),  their  children  who were born in Lithuania  or   in
refugee  camps,  but  were residing in other states,  and   other
persons of Lithuanian origin who were residing in foreign  states
or  in  the  territories governed by said states, but  also   the
children of other persons who held citizenship of the Republic of
Lithuania  until 15 June 1940 and were residing in other   states
(irrespective  of  where  they  were born)  and  later—also   the
grandchildren  (provided  that said persons, their children   and
grandchildren  have not repatriated from Lithuania), gained   the
said right.
      Such  expansion of the circle of persons who are   retained
the  right to citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania, save  the
discussed  clause, is not to be considered as being in   conflict
with any provisions of the Constitution. 
      48.6.  Also the circle of persons who could be citizens  of
the  Republic of Lithuania and of another state at the same  time
was expanded; it was done by the following:
      -  the  Law  "On Amending Article 18 of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania Law on Citizenship" adopted by the Seimas on 7 December
1993, which amended Paragraph 3 (wording of 10 December 1991)  of
Article  18 of the Law on Citizenship and set it forth in a   new
wording;
      -  Article 1 of the Law "On Amending and Supplementing  the
Republic  of Lithuania Law on Citizenship" adopted by the  Seimas
on  3  October  1995, which set forth Article 1  (wording  of   5
December  1991)  of the Law on Citizenship in a new wording   and
Article 7 which set forth Article 17 (wording of 5 December 1991)
of the Law on Citizenship in a new wording;
      - Article 1 of the Law on Amending Articles 1, 17 and 28 of
the  Law  on Citizenship adopted by the Seimas on 2  July   1997,
which  supplemented  and  set forth Paragraph 1  (wording  of   3
October 1995) of Article 17 of this law in a new wording;
      - Article 2 of the Law on Amending Articles 1, 17 and 28 of
the  Law  on Citizenship adopted by the Seimas on 2  July   1997,
which amended Item 1 (wording of 5 December 1991) of Paragraph  1
of Article 17 of the Law on Citizenship and set it forth in a new
wording.
      Finally,  the  legal regulation was established  that   the
circle  of  persons  who could be citizens of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania  and of another state at the same time was expanded  so
much  that  it created preconditions for double  citizenship   to
become  not  an  especially  rare exception,  but  a   widespread
phenomenon. 
      48.7. It needs to be held that the amendments to the Law on
Citizenship by which the circle of persons who could be  citizens
of  the  Republic of Lithuania and of another state at the   same
time was gradually expanded so that it created preconditions  for
double citizenship to become a widespread phenomenon were not  in
line  with  the  provision of Paragraph 2 of Article 12  of   the
Constitution  whereby  with  the exception of  individual   cases
provided for by law, no one may be a citizen of both the Republic
of Lithuania and another state at the same time. 
      48.8. Taking account of the arguments set forth, one is  to
draw  a  conclusion  that the following were  in  conflict   with
Paragraph 2 of Article 12 of the Constitution:
      -  Paragraph 3 (wording of 10 December 1991) of Article  18
of  the  Law  on  Citizenship, to the extent  that  it  did   not
establish  the  requirement to renounce the held citizenship   of
another  state when citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania   is
restored;
      - the provision "they shall not be applied the reservations
of the first paragraph of this article and Item 1 of Article 1 of
the  Law  on Citizenship" of Paragraph 3 (wording of 7   December
1993) of Article 18 of the Law on Citizenship;
      -  Item 1 (wording of 3 October 1995) of Article 1 of   the
Law  on Citizenship to the extent that it no longer included  the
former   provision  "provided  that  they  have  not     acquired
citizenship of another state" of this item (wording of 5 December
1991);
      - Paragraph 5 (wording of 3 October 1995) of Article 17  of
the  Law on Citizenship to the extent that it did not   establish
the requirement to renounce the held citizenship of another state
when citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania is restored;
      - Item 1 (wording of 2 July 1997) of Paragraph 1 of Article
1  of  the Law on Citizenship to the extent that it   established
that also the persons specified in this item who held citizenship
of another state shall be citizens of the Republic of Lithuania.
      48.9. Legal acts (paragraphs thereof) are considered to  be
not  in  conflict with the Constitution as long as they are   not
recognized  as being in conflict with the Constitution under  the
procedure  established  by  the Constitution or the Law  on   the
Constitutional Court.
      It  needs to be emphasized that the fact that it has   been
held  in  this  Constitutional  Court ruling  that  Paragraph   3
(wording  of  10  December  1991) of Article 18 of  the  Law   on
Citizenship,  to  the  extent  that it  did  not  establish   the
requirement  to  renounce the held citizenship of another   state
when  citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania is restored,   the
provision  "they  shall not be applied the reservations  of   the
first  paragraph of this article and Item 1 of Article 1 of   the
Law  on Citizenship" of Paragraph 3 (wording of 7 December  1993)
of  Article  18 of the Law on Citizenship, Item 1 (wording of   3
October  1995)  of  Paragraph  1  of Article 1  of  the  Law   on
Citizenship  to the extent that it no longer included the  former
provision  "provided that they have not acquired citizenship   of
another  state"  of  this  item (wording of  5  December   1991),
Paragraph 5 (wording of 3 October 1995) of Article 17 of the  Law
on  Citizenship  to  the extent that it did  not  establish   the
requirement  to  renounce the held citizenship of another   state
when  citizenship  of the Republic of Lithuania is restored   and
Item  1 (wording of 2 July 1997) of Paragraph 1 of Article 1   of
the  Law  on Citizenship to the extent that it established   that
also  the persons specified in this item who held citizenship  of
another state shall be citizens of the Republic of Lithuania were
in  conflict with Paragraph 2 of Article 12 of the  Constitution,
may not be interpreted as the grounds to question citizenship  of
the  Republic  of  Lithuania held by the  persons  who   acquired
citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania (or who are citizens  of
the  Republic  of  Lithuania) under the  corresponding   articles
(paragraphs  thereof)  of the Law on Citizenship (wording  of   5
December 1991 with subsequent amendments and supplements),  which
have  been  recognized  as unconstitutional, and who  also   hold
citizenship  of  another  state.  Such persons  continue  to   be
citizens of the Republic of Lithuania. 
      49.  It has been held in this Constitutional Court   ruling
that the following were in conflict with the Constitution:
      - the provision "departure for one's ethnical homeland  and
settlement  there  shall  be  considered  as  repatriation"    of
Paragraph  4 (wording of 15 March 1994) of Item 2 of the  Supreme
Council  Resolution "On the Procedure for Implementation of   the
Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship" of 10 December 1991;
      - the provision "departure for one's ethnical homeland  and
settlement  there  shall  be  considered  as  repatriation"    of
Paragraph  5 (wording of 18 July 1994) of Item 2 of the   Supreme
Council  Resolution "On the Procedure for Implementation of   the
Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship" of 10 December 1991;
      -  the provision "provided that all the specified   persons
have not repatriated" of Paragraph 3 (wording of 7 December 1993)
of  Article  18  of  the Law on Citizenship  and  the   provision
"provided that they have not repatriated from Lithuania" of  Item
1  (wording of 5 December 1991) of Paragraph 1 of Article 17   of
this law;
      -  the  provision  "provided that these persons  or   their
children have not repatriated from Lithuania" of Item 1  (wording
of  3  October 1995) of Paragraph 1 of Article 1 of the  Law   on
Citizenship;
      -  the  provision  "provided that these persons  or   their
children have not repatriated from Lithuania" of Item 1  (wording
of  3  October 1995) of Paragraph 1 of Article 17 of the Law   on
Citizenship;
      - Paragraph 3 (wording of 19 October 1995) of Article 1  of
the  Law on the Procedure for Implementation of the Republic   of
Lithuania Law on Citizenship;
      - the provision "provided that the persons, their  children
or  grandchildren have not repatriated from Lithuania" of Item  1
(wording  of 6 February 1996) of Paragraph 1 of Article 1 of  the
Law on Citizenship;
      - the provision "provided that the persons, their  children
or  grandchildren have not repatriated from Lithuania" of Item  1
(wording  of 2 July 1997) of Paragraph 1 of Article 1 of the  Law
on Citizenship;
      - the provision "provided that said persons, their children
or  grandchildren have not repatriated from Lithuania" of Item  1
(wording of 2 July 1997) of Paragraph 1 of Article 17 of the  Law
on Citizenship and
      - Paragraph 3 (wording of 2 July 1997) of Article 1 of  the
Law  "On  the  Procedure for Implementation of the  Republic   of
Lithuania Law on Citizenship". 
      It  needs  to  be emphasized that the recognition  of   the
articles  (paragraphs thereof) of the said laws and other   legal
acts  as being in conflict with the Constitution, taking  account
inter  alia  of  the  fact that it has also been  held  in   this
Constitutional  Court ruling that also such articles  (paragraphs
thereof)  of the Law on Citizenship (wording of 5 December   1991
with subsequent amendments and supplements) are in conflict  with
the  Constitution  which  entrenched the legal  regulation   that
created  preconditions  for  double  citizenship  to  become    a
widespread  phenomenon, is based not on the fact that the   right
for  the  persons  who repatriated from Lithuania also  to   hold
citizenship  of  the Republic of Lithuania along with  the   held
citizenship  was not established, but on the fact that the  right
to  citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania was not retained  to
the  said  persons,  i.e.,  in general, they no  longer  had   an
opportunity, under the law, to freely decide whether to  renounce
the  held citizenship of another state and to become citizens  of
the  Republic  of Lithuania, or to remain citizens of  the   said
another  state  and  not to become citizens of the  Republic   of
Lithuania.
      50. It was mentioned that on 17 September 2002, the  Seimas
adopted the Law on Citizenship; from that day the formerly  valid
Law  on Citizenship (wording of 5 December 1991 with   subsequent
amendments and supplements) became null and void. 
      It was also mentioned that on 17 September 2002, the Seimas
adopted  the Republic of Lithuania Law on the Implementation   of
the  Law on Citizenship; it came into effect on 1 January   2003;
from  that  day,  the formerly valid Law "On the  Procedure   for
Implementation  of the Republic of Lithuania Law on  Citizenship"
(wording  of 19 October 1995 with subsequent amendments)   became
null and void. 
      51.  Article  1  titled  "Citizens  of  the  Republic    of
Lithuania"  (wording  of  17  September  2002)  of  the  Law   on
Citizenship, the legal regulation established wherein is disputed
in this constitutional justice case, provides:
      "The following persons shall be citizens of the Republic of
Lithuania:
      1)  persons  who  held  citizenship  of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania  prior to 15 June 1940, their children,   grandchildren
and  great-grandchildren  (provided  that these  persons,   their
children,   grandchildren   or  great-grandchildren  have     not
repatriated);
      2)  persons  who  permanently resided in  the   present-day
territory  of  the  Republic of Lithuania in the period  from   9
January  1919  to  15  June 1940, as  well  as  their   children,
grandchildren  and great-grandchildren, provided that on the  day
of  coming into force of the Law on Citizenship they were and  at
the  present  time  permanently reside in the territory  of   the
Republic of Lithuania and are not citizens of any other state;
      3) persons of Lithuanian origin if they are not citizens of
any other state. A person whose parents or grandparents or one of
the  parents or grandparents is or was Lithuanian and the  person
considers  himself  Lithuanian  shall be considered as  being   a
person of Lithuanian origin;
      4)  persons  who acquired citizenship of the  Republic   of
Lithuania  prior to 4 November 1991 under the Law on  Citizenship
adopted on 3 November 1989;
      5)  other  persons  who have acquired citizenship  of   the
Republic  of Lithuania under the Law on Citizenship adopted on  5
December 1991."
      52. On the grounds of the arguments analogous to those upon
which  it has been held in this Constitutional Court ruling  that
Item  1 (wording of 2 July 1997) of Paragraph 1 of Article 1   of
the Law on Citizenship to the extent that it entrenched that also
the  persons  specified  in this item who  hold  citizenship   of
another state shall be citizens of the Republic of Lithuania  was
in  conflict with Paragraph 2 of Article 12 of the  Constitution,
it needs to be held that Item 1 (wording of 17 September 2002) of
Paragraph  1 of Article 1 of the Law on Citizenship also to   the
extent  that it provides that the persons specified in this  item
who  hold citizenship of another state shall be citizens of   the
Republic  of  Lithuania is also in conflict with Paragraph 2   of
Article 12 of the Constitution. 
      53. On the grounds of the arguments analogous to those upon
which  it has been held in this Constitutional Court ruling  that
the  provision  "departure  for  one's  ethnical  homeland    and
settlement  there  shall  be  considered  as  repatriation"    of
Paragraph  4 (wording of 15 March 1994) of Item 2 of the  Supreme
Council  Resolution "On the Procedure for Implementation of   the
Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship" of 10 December 1991 was
in  conflict,  as  to  its  content,  with  Article  29  of   the
Constitution  and  with the constitutional principle of a   state
under  the  rule  of  law, it needs to be  held  that  also   the
provision   "provided  that  these  persons,  their     children,
grandchildren  or  great-grandchildren have not repatriated"   of
Item 1 (wording of 17 September 2002) of Paragraph 1 of Article 1
of  the Law on Citizenship is in conflict with Article 29 of  the
Constitution  and  with the constitutional principle of a   state
under the rule of law. 
      54.  Having  held that the provision "provided that   these
persons,  their  children, grandchildren or   great-grandchildren
have not repatriated" of Item 1 (wording of 17 September 2002) of
Paragraph 1 of Article 1 of the Law on Citizenship is in conflict
with  Article 29 of the Constitution and with the  constitutional
principle  of a state under the rule of law, the   Constitutional
Court  will no longer investigate whether the provision  "persons
who  held  citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania prior to   15
June 1940, their children, grandchildren and  great-grandchildren
(provided  that these persons, their children, grandchildren   or
great-grandchildren  have not repatriated) shall be citizens   of
the Republic of Lithuania" of Article 1 (wording of 17  September
2002)  of this law to the extent that, according to the   Vilnius
Regional Administrative Court, the petitioner, it entrenches that
persons  who held citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania  prior
to  15  June  1940,  their  children,  grandchildren  and  great-
grandchildren  provided  that  these  persons,  their   children,
grandchildren  or  great-grandchildren repatriated shall not   be
considered  citizens  of  the Republic of Lithuania, is  not   in
conflict  with  Paragraphs  1  and  3  of  Article  12  of    the
Constitution and with the constitutional principle of justice.
      55.   Article  17  titled  "Retention  of  the  Right    to
Citizenship  of  the  Republic  of  Lithuania"  (wording  of   17
September  2002) of the Law on Citizenship, the legal  regulation
established   in  Paragraph  1  whereof  is  disputed  in    this
constitutional justice case, provides:
      "1.  The  following  persons  shall retain  the  right   to
citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania for an indefinite period
of time:
      1)  persons  who  held  citizenship  of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania  prior to 15 June 1940, their children,   grandchildren
and  great-grandchildren  (provided  that  said  persons,   their
children,   grandchildren   or  great-grandchildren  have     not
repatriated), who are residing in other states;
      2)  persons of Lithuanian origin who are residing in  other
states.
      2.  Persons  who  retain the right to citizenship  of   the
Republic  of Lithuania shall be issued, upon their   application,
according  to the procedure established by the Government of  the
Republic of Lithuania, documents confirming the right.
      3.  Persons  specified in Items 1 and 2 of Paragraph 1   of
this  Article,  shall exercise the right to citizenship  of   the
Republic of Lithuania in accordance with Item 1 of Paragraph 1 of
Article  1  of  this  Law  or shall  be  considered  persons   of
Lithuanian origin residing in other states."
      56. On the grounds of the arguments analogous to those upon
which  it has been held in this Constitutional Court ruling  that
Paragraph 5 (wording of 3 October 1995) of Article 17 of the  Law
on  Citizenship  to  the extent that it did  not  establish   the
requirement  to  renounce the held citizenship of another   state
when citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania is restored was  in
conflict  with Paragraph 2 of Article 12 of the Constitution,  it
needs to be held that also Paragraph 3 of Article 17 (wording  of
17  September 2002) of the Law on Citizenship to the extent  that
it  does  not  establish the requirement to  renounce  the   held
citizenship  of  another  state when implementing the  right   to
citizenship  of  the Republic of Lithuania is in  conflict   with
Paragraph 2 of Article 12 of the Constitution. 
      57. On the grounds of the arguments analogous to those upon
which  it has been held in this Constitutional Court ruling  that
the  provision  "departure  for  one's  ethnical  homeland    and
settlement  there  shall  be  considered  as  repatriation"    of
Paragraph  4 (wording of 15 March 1994) of Item 2 of the  Supreme
Council  Resolution "On the Procedure for Implementation of   the
Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship" of 10 December 1991 was
in  conflict,  as  to  its  content,  with  Article  29  of   the
Constitution  and  with the constitutional principle of a   state
under  the  rule  of  law, it needs to be  held  that  also   the
provision   "provided  that  these  persons,  their     children,
grandchildren  or  great-grandchildren have not repatriated"   of
Item  1 (wording of 17 September 2002) of Paragraph 1 of  Article
17  of the Law on Citizenship is in conflict with Article 29   of
the Constitution and with the constitutional principle of a state
under the rule of law. 
      58.  Having  held that the provision "provided that   these
persons,  their  children, grandchildren or   great-grandchildren
have not repatriated" of Item 1 (wording of 17 September 2002) of
Paragraph  1  of  Article  17 of the Law on  Citizenship  is   in
conflict  with  Article  29  of the Constitution  and  with   the
constitutional  principle of a state under the rule of law,   the
Constitutional  Court  will  no longer investigate  whether   the
provision  "the  following  persons shall retain  the  right   to
citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania for an indefinite period
of  time:  (1) persons who held citizenship of the  Republic   of
Lithuania  prior to 15 June 1940, their children,   grandchildren
and  great-grandchildren  (provided  that  said  persons,   their
children,   grandchildren   or  great-grandchildren  have     not
repatriated),  who are residing in other states" of Paragraph   1
(wording  of 17 September 2002) of Article 17 of this law to  the
extent  that,  according to the Vilnius Regional   Administrative
Court,   the  petitioner,  it  entrenches  that  the  right    to
citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania shall not be retained to
persons  who held citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania  prior
to  15  June  1940,  their  children,  grandchildren  and  great-
grandchildren  who  reside in other states, provided that   these
persons,  their  children, grandchildren or   great-grandchildren
have  repatriated, is not in conflict with Paragraphs 1 and 3  of
Article  12  of  the Constitution and  with  the   constitutional
principle of justice.
      59. Paragraph 2 (wording of 17 September 2002) of Article 2
titled  "Provisions on Application of the Law on Citizenship"  of
the Law on the Implementation of the Law on Citizenship provides:
"Departure  for  one's  ethnical homeland and residence  in   the
ethnical homeland shall be considered repatriation". 
      60.  When  Paragraph 2 (wording of 17 September  2002)   of
Article 2 of the Law on Citizenship is compared with Paragraph  3
(wordings of 19 October 1995 and 2 July 1997) of Article 1 of the
Law "On the Implementation Procedure of the Republic of Lithuania
Law  on Citizenship", wherein it is established that   "departure
for one's ethnical homeland or residence in the ethnical homeland
shall  be  considered  repatriation", it  becomes  obvious   that
changing  the  formulation  of  the  definition  of  the   notion
"repatriation" (the conjunction "or" into the conjunction  "and")
does not mean that there have been any changes in the attitude of
the legislator whereby the retention of the right to  citizenship
of  the Republic of Lithuania depends on the ethnical origin   of
the person and on the fact for what country—his ethnical homeland
or other country—the person departed from Lithuania. 
      61. On the grounds of the arguments analogous to those upon
which  it has been held in this Constitutional Court ruling  that
the  provision  "departure  for  one's  ethnical  homeland    and
settlement  there  shall  be  considered  as  repatriation"    of
Paragraph  4 (wording of 15 March 1994) of Item 2 of the  Supreme
Council  Resolution "On the Procedure for Implementation of   the
Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship" of 10 December 1991 was
(as was Paragraph 3 (wordings of 19 October 1995 and 2 July 1997)
of  Article 1 of the Law "On the Procedure for Implementation  of
the Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship") in conflict, as to
its  content,  with Article 29 of the Constitution and with   the
constitutional  principle  of a state under the rule of law,   it
needs  to be held that also Paragraph 2 (wording of 17  September
2002) of Article 2 of the Law on the Procedure for Implementation
of  the Law on Citizenship is in conflict with Article 29 of  the
Constitution  and  with the constitutional principle of a   state
under the rule of law. 
      62.  Having held that Paragraph 2 (wording of 17  September
2002) of Article 2 of the Law on the Procedure for Implementation
of  the Law on Citizenship is in conflict with Article 29 of  the
Constitution  and  with the constitutional principle of a   state
under  the rule of law, the Constitutional Court will no   longer
investigate  whether  this  paragraph is not  in  conflict   with
Paragraphs 1 and 3 of Article 12 of the Constitution and with the
constitutional principle of justice. 
      63. Article 18 titled "Loss of Citizenship of the  Republic
of  Lithuania"  (wording  of 17 September 2002) of  the  Law   on
Citizenship,  the  legal regulation established in  Paragraph   2
whereof  is  disputed  in  this  constitutional  justice    case,
provides:
      "1. Citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania shall be lost:
      1)  upon  renunciation of citizenship of the  Republic   of
Lithuania;
      2) upon acquisition of citizenship of another state;
      3) on the grounds provided for by international  agreements
to which the Republic of Lithuania is a party.
      2.  Item  2  of Paragraph 1 of this Article shall  not   be
applicable to:
      1)  persons  who  held  citizenship  of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania  prior to 15 June 1940, their children,   grandchildren
and  great-grandchildren  (provided  that  said  persons,   their
children,   grandchildren   or  great-grandchildren  have     not
repatriated);
      2)   persons  of  Lithuanian  origin  whose  parents     or
grandparents are or were or one of parents or grandparents is  or
was Lithuanian and the person considers himself Lithuanian.
      3. A person may be recognised as having lost citizenship of
the  Republic  of Lithuania if he is in the military service   of
another  state  or is employed in the public service of   another
state  without  having  been granted authorisation  by   relevant
institutions of the Republic of Lithuania."
      64.  Paragraph 2 (wording of 17 September 2002) of  Article
18  of  the Law on Citizenship establishes the legal   regulation
whereby  the  persons  who held citizenship of the  Republic   of
Lithuania  prior to 15 June 1940, their children,   grandchildren
and  great-grandchildren  (provided  that  said  persons,   their
children,   grandchildren   or  great-grandchildren  have     not
repatriated)  as well as the persons of Lithuanian origin   whose
parents  or  grandparents  are  or were or  one  of  parents   or
grandparents  is  or  was Lithuanian and  the  person   considers
himself  Lithuanian  do not lose citizenship of the Republic   of
Lithuania upon acquisition of citizenship of another state; thus,
these  persons can be both citizens of the Republic of  Lithuania
and  citizens  of another state at the same time. In  such   way,
preconditions are created for double citizenship to become not an
especially rare exception, but a widespread phenomenon. 
      Such  legal regulation established in Paragraph 2  (wording
of 17 September 2002) of Article 18 of the Law on Citizenship  is
not  in  line  with  the provision that with  the  exception   of
individual cases provided for by law, no one may be a citizen  of
both the Republic of Lithuania and another state at the same time
of Paragraph 2 of Article 12 of the Constitution. 
      65.  Taking account of the arguments set forth, one is   to
draw a conclusion that Paragraph 2 (wording of 17 September 2002)
of  Article  18 of the Law on Citizenship was in  conflict   with
Paragraph 2 of Article 12 of the Constitution. 
      66.  Having  held this, the Constitutional Court  will   no
longer  investigate whether the provision "Item 2 of Paragraph  1
of  this Article shall not be applicable to: <…> (2) persons   of
Lithuanian  origin whose parents or grandparents are or were   or
one  of  parents  or grandparents is or was Lithuanian  and   the
person  considers himself Lithuanian" of Paragraph 2 (wording  of
17 September 2002) of Article 18 of the Law on Citizenship to the
extent  that  it provided that Item 2 (wording of  17   September
2002)  of  Paragraph 1 of Article 18 of the Law  on   Citizenship
shall not be applied to persons of Lithuanian origin and shall be
applied  to persons of non-Lithuanian origin was not in  conflict
with  Paragraphs  1  and 3 of Article 12 and Article 29  of   the
Constitution.
      67.  Article  2 of the Law on Amending  and   Supplementing
Articles  12,  18, 20, 26, 28 and 30 of the Law on   Citizenship,
which  was  adopted  by  the Seimas on  6  April  2006,   amended
Paragraph  2 (wording of 17 September 2002) of Article 18 of  the
Law  on  Citizenship  and  supplemented this  article  with   new
Paragraph 4.
      67.1.  Article 18 (wording of 6 April 2006) of the Law   on
Citizenship provides:
      "1. Citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania shall be lost:
      1)  upon  renunciation of citizenship of the  Republic   of
Lithuania ;
      2) upon acquisition of citizenship of another state;
      3) on the grounds provided for by international treaties of
the Republic of Lithuania.
      2. Item 2 of Paragraph 1 of this Article shall not apply to
a  citizen of the Republic of Lithuania who acquired  citizenship
of another state after 1 January 2003 if he is:
      1)  a  person  who  held citizenship of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania prior to 15 June 1940, his child, grandchild and great-
grandchild (provided that the said person, his child,  grandchild
or great-grandchild have not repatriated);
      2)  a  person  of  Lithuanian  origin  whose  parents    or
grandparents are or were or one of parents or grandparents is  or
was Lithuanian and the person considers himself Lithuanian.
      3. A person may be recognised as having lost citizenship of
the  Republic  of Lithuania if he is in the military service   of
another  state  or is employed in the civil service  of   another
state  without  having  been granted authorization  by   relevant
institutions of the Republic of Lithuania.
      4.  The  persons specified in Paragraph 2 of this   Article
upon acquiring citizenship of another state or upon receiving the
passport  of  a citizen of another state or any  other   document
confirming  citizenship  of that state before 31  December   2002
shall  be considered to have lost citizenship of the Republic  of
Lithuania  from the day of acquisition of citizenship of  another
state or from the day of issue of the passport of citizen of that
state  or from the day of issue of any other document  confirming
citizenship of that state."
      67.2.  The  legal  regulation established in  Paragraph   2
(wording of 6 April 2006) of Article 18 of the Law on Citizenship
essentially means the same as the one established in Paragraph  2
(wording  of  17  September 2002) of Article 18 of  the  Law   on
Citizenship:  persons  who held citizenship of the  Republic   of
Lithuania  prior to 15 June 1940, their children,   grandchildren
and  great-grandchildren  (provided  that  said  persons,   their
children,   grandchildren   or  great-grandchildren  have     not
repatriated)  as  well  as persons of  Lithuanian  origin   whose
parents  or  grandparents  are  or were or  one  of  parents   or
grandparents  is  or  was Lithuanian and  the  person   considers
himself  Lithuanian  do not lose citizenship of the Republic   of
Lithuania  upon acquisition of citizenship of another state   and
these persons can be citizens of the Republic of Lithuania and of
another  state at the same time. In such way, preconditions   are
created  for double citizenship to become not an especially  rare
exception, but a widespread phenomenon. 
      Such  legal regulation established in Paragraph 2  (wording
of  6 April 2006) of Article 18 of the Law on Citizenship is  not
in  line with the provision of Paragraph 2 of Article 12 of   the
Constitution that with the exception of individual cases provided
for  by  law,  no one may be a citizen of both the  Republic   of
Lithuania and an another state at the same time. 
      67.3. Taking account of the arguments set forth, one is  to
draw  a conclusion that Paragraph 2 (wording of 6 April 2006)  of
Article  18  of  the  Law on Citizenship  is  in  conflict   with
Paragraph 2 of Article 12 of the Constitution.
      68.  It has been held in this Constitutional Court   ruling
that  the doubts concerning the compliance of the disputed  legal
act with the Constitution raised in the petitions of the group of
Members  of  the Seimas and the Vilnius Regional   Administrative
Court,  the petitioners, are related inter alia to the fact,  how
it is defined who are citizens of the Republic of Lithuania, what
legislative  possibilities  for  citizens  of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania  also to have citizenship of another state there   are,
how  the  relations  of loss of citizenship of the  Republic   of
Lithuania  are regulated (in particular, upon acquisition of  the
citizenship of another state). 
      It  has also been held in this Constitutional Court  ruling
that  certain  articles  (paragraphs  thereof)  of  the  Law   on
Citizenship  (wording  of  17  September  2002  with   subsequent
amendments  and  supplements)  create preconditions  for   double
citizenship  to  become not an especially rare exception, but   a
widespread  phenomenon. By this Constitutional Court ruling   the
said articles (paragraphs thereof) have been recognized as  being
in conflict with Paragraph 2 of Article 12 of the Constitution.
      It  needs to be noted that the legislative entrenchment  of
the  preconditions for appearance of double citizenship is to  be
related not only to the articles (paragraphs thereof) of the  Law
on  Citizenship  (wording of 17 September 2002  with   subsequent
amendments  and  supplements) wherein, violating Paragraph 2   of
Article  12  of the Constitution, the corps of citizens  of   the
Republic  of Lithuania is defined, the institute of retention  of
the  right  to  citizenship  of the  Republic  of  Lithuania   is
entrenched  and  the  relations of loss of  citizenship  of   the
Republic  of  Lithuania  are regulated. Such  preconditions   may
appear  when  regulating  other relations too,  inter  alia   the
relations  of  returning  of  citizenship  of  the  Republic   of
Lithuania. 
      The  preconditions for violation of Paragraph 2 of  Article
12  of  the  Constitution  may appear not only  when  the   legal
regulation is established whereby double citizenship becomes  not
an  especially rare exception, but a widespread phenomenon,   but
also  when  citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania is   granted
(also  by way of exception) to such persons who hold  citizenship
of  another state, who are not connected by a permanent   factual
link with the State of Lithuania and are not integrated into  the
Lithuanian society. In both cases citizenship of the Republic  of
Lithuania may be devaluated.
      While assessing the legal regulation established in the Law
on  Citizenship  (wording of 17 September 2002  with   subsequent
amendments and supplements) in a systemic manner, one is to  hold
that  after it has been recognized by this Constitutional   Court
ruling that certain articles (paragraphs thereof) of the said law
which were effective at the time when this constitutional justice
case  was  considered  and which permitted the citizens  of   the
Republic of Lithuania to be citizens of other states at the  same
time,  namely Item 1 (wording of 17 September 2002) of Article  1
to the extent that it provides that also the persons specified in
this  item  who also held citizenship of another state shall   be
citizens of the Republic of Lithuania, Paragraph 3 (wording of 17
September  2002)  of Article 17 to the extent that it  does   not
establish  the  requirement to renounce the held citizenship   of
another  state when the right to citizenship of the Republic   of
Lithuania  is  implemented and Paragraph 2 (wording of  6   April
2006)  of Article 18 are in conflict with Paragraph 2 of  Article
12 of the Constitution, the legislative preconditions that  allow
to  violate the imperatives of Paragraph 2 of Article 12 of   the
Constitution  under  other  articles of the Law  on   Citizenship
(wording  of  17 September 2002 with subsequent  amendments   and
supplements)  which permit citizens of the Republic of  Lithuania
to  be  also citizens of other states at the same time  are   not
fully  removed.  In this respect also Paragraph 2 (wording of   6
April  2006)  of Article 20 and Paragraph 1 (wording of 18   July
2006) of Article 16 of the same law are also deficient.
      68.1.  Paragraph 2 (wording of 6 April 2006) of Article  20
titled  "Return of Citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania"   of
the Law on Citizenship provides:
      "A  person  who  has lost citizenship of the  Republic   of
Lithuania prior to the day of entry into force of this Law,  also
on  the grounds provided for in Paragraphs 1, 3 and 4 of  Article
18  of  this Law, in Paragraph 7 of Article 4 of the Law on   the
Implementation  of  the  Law on Citizenship and  who  meets   the
conditions set forth in Items 1, 2 or 3 of Paragraph 1 of Article
1 of this Law may have, upon his application, citizenship of  the
Republic  of  Lithuania restored without having  the   conditions
established  in  Article 12 of this Law applied with respect   to
him."
      68.1.1. Such legal regulation, when a person, who wants  to
restore citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania, is not required
inter  alia  to renounce the held citizenship of  another   state
creates  preconditions  for  double  citizenship to  be  not   an
especially rare exception, but a widespread phenomenon, and it is
not  in line with the provision of Paragraph 2 of Article 12   of
the  Constitution  that with the exception of  individual   cases
provided for by law, no one may be a citizen of both the Republic
of Lithuania and another state at the same time. 
      68.1.2.  Taking account of the arguments set forth, one  is
to  draw a conclusion that Paragraph 2 (wording of 6 April  2006)
of  Article  20 of the Law on Citizenship to the extent that   it
establishes that a person who wants to restore citizenship of the
Republic of Lithuania shall not be required to renounce the  held
citizenship  of another state is in conflict with Paragraph 2  of
Article 12 of the Constitution. 
      68.2.  Paragraph 1 (wording of 18 July 2006) of Article  16
titled  "Granting of Citizenship by Way of Exception" of the  Law
on Citizenship provides:
      "The  President  of the Republic, invoking this  Law,   may
grant  citizenship  of the Republic of Lithuania to citizens   of
foreign states or stateless persons for merits to the Republic of
Lithuania,  who  integrated  into  Lithuanian  society,   without
applying  with  respect to them conditions for the  granting   of
citizenship  provided  for  in  Article  12  of  this  Law.   The
activities of a citizen of a foreign state or a stateless  person
whereby   the  person  makes  a  substantial  contribution     to
strengthening  the  statehood  of  the  Republic  of   Lithuania,
increasing  the might of the Republic of Lithuania and  promoting
its authority in the international community shall be  considered
as  merits  to  the Republic of Lithuania.  Citizenship  of   the
Republic  of  Lithuania may also be granted by way of   exception
without  applying  conditions  for the granting  of   citizenship
provided  for  in Article 12 of this Law when it is  related   to
public  interest or glorification of the name of the Republic  of
Lithuania by representing Lithuania." 
      68.2.1. It has also been held in this Constitutional  Court
ruling  that the merits of the person who requests to be  granted
citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania by way of exception must
be  such and grounded in such a way, so that it would not   cause
any  doubts  as  to their presence, that even in  cases  when   a
citizen  of a foreign state or a stateless person has merits   to
the  Republic  of  Lithuania  and is linked with  the  State   of
Lithuania  by  permanent factual links, is integrated  into   the
Lithuanian society, when one decides whether to grant citizenship
of  the  Republic  of  Lithuania  to such a  person  by  way   of
exception,  one must assess all the circumstances  characterizing
such  a person, and one must follow the interests of the   Nation
and the State of Lithuania. 
      68.2.2.  The  provision  "Citizenship of the  Republic   of
Lithuania  may  also  be  granted by way  of  exception   without
applying conditions for the granting of citizenship provided  for
in  Article 12 of this Law when it is related to public  interest
or  glorification  of the name of the Republic of  Lithuania   by
representing Lithuania" of Paragraph 1 (wording of 18 July  2006)
of  Article 16 of the Law on Citizenship means that a person  who
holds citizenship of another state may be granted citizenship  of
the Republic of Lithuania irrespective of whether he already  has
special  merits to the State of Lithuania or not yet, whether  he
already  is  linked  with the State of  Lithuania  by   permanent
factual  links or not, and whether he is already integrated  into
the Lithuanian society or not. 
      Such   legal   regulation  is  not  in  line   with     the
constitutional  concept  of  citizenship  of  the  Republic    of
Lithuania,  it groundlessly expands the opportunities to  acquire
citizenship  of  the Republic of Lithuania to persons, who   hold
citizenship  of  another  state, without applying  to  them   the
conditions established in Article 12 (wording of 6 April 2006) of
the Law on Citizenship.
      The provision "Citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania may
also  be granted by way of exception without applying  conditions
for  the  granting of citizenship provided for in Article 12   of
this  Law when it is related to public interest or  glorification
of  the  name  of  the Republic  of  Lithuania  by   representing
Lithuania" of Paragraph 1 (wording of 18 July 2006) of Article 16
of  the Law on Citizenship is incompatible with the provision  of
Paragraph 2 of Article 12 of the Constitution which provides that
with  the exception of individual cases provided for by law,   no
one  may  be  a citizen of both the Republic  of  Lithuania   and
another state at the same time.
      68.2.3.  Taking account of the arguments set forth, one  is
to  draw  a  conclusion that the provision "Citizenship  of   the
Republic  of  Lithuania may also be granted by way of   exception
without  applying  conditions  for the granting  of   citizenship
provided  for  in Article 12 of this Law when it is  related   to
public  interest or glorification of the name of the Republic  of
Lithuania  by representing Lithuania" of Paragraph 1 (wording  of
18  July  2006)  of Article 16 of the Law on Citizenship  is   in
conflict with Paragraph 2 of Article 12 of the Constitution. 
      69.  The fact that it has been held in this  Constitutional
Court  ruling  that  Item 1 (wording of 17  September  2002)   of
Article  1 to the extent that it provides that also the   persons
specified in this item who also held citizenship of another state
shall  be  citizens  of the Republic of Lithuania,  Paragraph   3
(wording  of 17 September 2002) of Article 17 to the extent  that
it  does  not  establish the requirement to  renounce  the   held
citizenship of another state when the right to citizenship of the
Republic  of Lithuania is implemented, Paragraph 2 (wording of  6
April 2006) of Article 18, Paragraph 2 (wording of 6 April  2006)
of Article 20 to the extent that it establishes that a person who
wants  to restore citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania  shall
not be required to renounce the held citizenship of another state
and  the provision "Citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania  may
also  be granted by way of exception without applying  conditions
for  the  granting of citizenship provided for in Article 12   of
this  Law when it is related to public interest or  glorification
of  the  name  of  the Republic  of  Lithuania  by   representing
Lithuania" of Paragraph 1 (wording of 18 July 2006) of Article 16
of  the  Law on Citizenship are in conflict with Paragraph 2   of
Article  12  of  the Constitution, as well as that  Paragraph   2
(wording  of  17  September 2002) of Article 18 of  the  Law   on
Citizenship was in conflict with Paragraph 2 of Article 12 of the
Constitution,  may not be interpreted as the grounds to  question
citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania held by the persons  who
acquired  citizenship  of the Republic of Lithuania (or who   are
citizens  of the Republic of Lithuania) under the   corresponding
articles (paragraphs thereof) of the Law on Citizenship  (wording
of  5 December 1991 with subsequent amendments and  supplements),
which have been recognized as unconstitutional, and who also hold
citizenship of another state.
                                IV
      1. Proper legal regulation of the citizenship relations  of
the Republic of Lithuania, which is grounded on the Constitution,
is  an  important  condition for strengthening statehood  and   a
factor  consolidating  the  Lithuanian  civil  Nation—the   state
community.
      2. The legal regulation of the citizenship relations of the
Republic  of Lithuania must be stable. It is particularly to   be
said  about the legislative provisions which define the corps  of
citizens of the Republic of Lithuania.
      3. While assessing the legal regulation established in  the
Law on Citizenship (wording of 17 September 2002 with  subsequent
amendments  and supplements) which was in effect at the time   of
consideration of this constitutional justice case, one is to note
that  this legal regulation is very controversial,   inconsistent
and confusing. This law includes a number of provisions which are
hardly compatible with each other. Some formulas are ambiguous. 
      This law is to be corrected in essence.
      4. The legislator, disregarding the provision of  Paragraph
2  of Article 12 of the Constitution that with the exception   of
individual cases provided for by law, no one may be a citizen  of
both  the  Republic of Lithuania and another state at  the   same
time,  continually  expanded the legislative  possibilities   for
citizens of the Republic of Lithuania also to hold citizenship of
another state.
      Finally, such legal regulation was established, when a  big
part  of  citizens of the Republic of Lithuania can at the   same
time  to be also citizens of other states. The legal   regulation
established  in the Law on Citizenship (wording of 17   September
2002  with subsequent amendments and supplements) not only   does
not prevent from that but even encourages such tendency. 
      Under the Constitution, it is not justifiable.
      5.  It  is to be emphasized that if the legislator   really
follows the provision that it is not necessary to restrict double
citizenship,  he  should first of all start the revision of   the
corresponding  provisions  of  the Constitution, inter  alia   of
Article  12, and to do that by following the procedure which   is
established in the Constitution itself.
      In  this context it is to be noted that Article 12 of   the
Constitution which establishes the basis for the legal regulation
of  citizenship  relations  of the Republic of Lithuania  is   in
Chapter I titled "The State of Lithuania" of the  Constitution—an
integral  act—for  the  provisions of which a  particularly   big
constitutional protection has been established: under Paragraph 2
of  Article 148 of the Constitution, the provisions of Chapter  I
of the Constitution may be altered only by referendum.
      6.  No  matter  in  what  way  the  legal  regulation    of
citizenship  relations  of  the Republic of Lithuania  might   be
corrected in the future, the provisions of the Constitution  must
be  heeded, inter alia those which entrench the equality of   all
persons and non-discrimination on the grounds of ethnical origin.
      Conforming  to Articles 102 and 105 of the Constitution  of
the  Republic of Lithuania and Articles 1, 53, 54, 55 and 56   of
the Law on the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Lithuania,
the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Lithuania has  passed
the following
                             ruling:
      1.  To  recognize that the provision "provided  that   said
persons  have not repatriated from Lithuania" of Item 1  (wording
of 5 December 1991, Official Gazette Valstybės žinios, 1991,  No.
36-977) of Paragraph 1 of Article 17 of the Republic of Lithuania
Law  on  Citizenship  was  in conflict with Article  29  of   the
Constitution   of  the  Republic  of  Lithuania  and  with    the
constitutional principle of a state under the rule of law. 
      2.  To recognize that Paragraph 3 (wording of 10   December
1991,  Official  Gazette Valstybės žinios, 1991, No. 36-981)   of
Article  18 of the Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship,   to
the extent that it did not establish the requirement to  renounce
the  held  citizenship of another state when citizenship of   the
Republic of Lithuania is restored, was in conflict with Paragraph
2 of Article 12 of the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania.
      3.  To recognize that the provision "provided that all  the
specified  persons  have  not  repatriated  from  Lithuania"   of
Paragraph  3  (wording  of  7 December  1993,  Official   Gazette
Valstybės  žinios,  1993,  No.  70-1303) of Article  18  of   the
Republic  of  Lithuania Law on Citizenship was in conflict   with
Article  29 of the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania  and
with  the constitutional principle of a state under the rule   of
law,  while  the  provision  "they  shall  not  be  applied   the
reservations of the first paragraph of this Article and Item 1 of
Article 1 of the Law on Citizenship" of Paragraph 3 (wording of 7
December  1993, Official Gazette Valstybės žinios, 1993, No.  70-
1303) of Article 18 of this law was in conflict with Paragraph  2
of Article 12 of the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania. 
      4.  To  recognize that the provision "provided that   these
persons or their children have not repatriated from Lithuania" of
Item  1  (wording of 3 October 1995, Official Gazette   Valstybės
žinios,  1995,  No. 86-1940) of Paragraph 1 of Article 1 of   the
Republic  of  Lithuania Law on Citizenship was in conflict   with
Article  29 of the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania  and
with  the constitutional principle of a state under the rule   of
law,  while Item 1 (wording of 3 October 1995, Official   Gazette
Valstybės žinios, 1995, No. 86-1940) of Paragraph 1 of Article  1
of this law, to the extent that it no longer included the  former
provision  "provided that they have not acquired citizenship   of
another state" of this item (wording of 5 December 1991, Official
Gazette Valstybės žinios, 1991, No. 36-977) was in conflict  with
Paragraph 2 of Article 12 of the Constitution of the Republic  of
Lithuania. 
      5.  To  recognize that the provision "provided that   these
persons or their children have not repatriated from Lithuania" of
Item  1  (wording of 3 October 1995, Official Gazette   Valstybės
žinios,  1995, No. 86-1940) of Paragraph 1 of Article 17 of   the
Republic  of  Lithuania Law on Citizenship was in conflict   with
Article  29 of the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania  and
with  the constitutional principle of a state under the rule   of
law.
      6.  To  recognize that Paragraph 5 (wording of  3   October
1995,  Official Gazette Valstybės žinios, 1995, No. 86-1940)   of
Article  17 of the Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship,   to
the extent that it did not establish the requirement to  renounce
the held citizenship of another state when implementing the right
to citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania, was in conflict with
Paragraph 2 of Article 12 of the Constitution of the Republic  of
Lithuania. 
      7.  To  recognize that the provision "provided that   these
persons or their children have not repatriated from Lithuania" of
Item  1 (wording of 6 February 1996, Official Gazette   Valstybės
žinios,  1996,  No. 16-415) of Paragraph 1 of Article 17 of   the
Republic  of  Lithuania Law on Citizenship was in conflict   with
Article  29 of the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania  and
with  the constitutional principle of a state under the rule   of
law.
      8.  To  recognize that the provision "provided that   these
persons  or their children or grandchildren have not  repatriated
from  Lithuania"  of  Item 1 (wording of 2 July  1997,   Official
Gazette  Valstybės žinios, 1997, No. 67-1668) of Paragraph 1   of
Article 1 of the Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship was  in
conflict  with Article 29 of the Constitution of the Republic  of
Lithuania and with the constitutional principle of a state  under
the rule of law.
      9.  To  recognize  that Item 1 (wording of  2  July   1997,
Official  Gazette  Valstybės  žinios,  1997,  No.  67-1668)    of
Paragraph  1  of Article 1 of the Republic of Lithuania  Law   on
Citizenship,  to  the  extent that it entrenched that  also   the
persons  specified in this item who held citizenship of   another
state  shall  be  citizens of the Republic of Lithuania  was   in
conflict  with Paragraph 2 of Article 12 of the Constitution   of
the Republic of Lithuania.
      10.  To recognize that the provision "provided that   these
persons  or their children or grandchildren have not  repatriated
from  Lithuania"  of  Item 1 (wording of 2 July  1997,   Official
Gazette  Valstybės žinios, 1997, No. 67-1668) of Paragraph 1   of
Article 17 of the Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship was in
conflict  with Article 29 of the Constitution of the Republic  of
Lithuania and with the constitutional principle of a state  under
the rule of law.
      11.  To recognize that Paragraph 3 (wording of 19   October
1995,  Official Gazette Valstybės žinios, 1995, No. 90-2014)   of
Article 1 of the Republic of Lithuania Law "On the Procedure  for
Implementation  of the Republic of Lithuania Law on  Citizenship"
was  in  conflict  with Article 29 of the  Constitution  of   the
Republic of Lithuania and with the constitutional principle of  a
state under the rule of law. 
      12. To recognize that Paragraph 3 (wording of 2 July  1997,
Official Gazette Valstybės žinios, 1997, No. 67-1669) of  Article
1  of  the  Republic  of Lithuania Law  "On  the  Procedure   for
Implementation  of the Republic of Lithuania Law on  Citizenship"
was  in  conflict  with Article 29 of the  Constitution  of   the
Republic of Lithuania and with the constitutional principle of  a
state under the rule of law. 
      13. To recognize that Item 1 (wording of 17 September 2002,
Official  Gazette  Valstybės  žinios,  2002,  No.  95-4087)    of
Paragraph  1  of Article 1 of the Republic of Lithuania  Law   on
Citizenship,  to  the  extent that it entrenched that  also   the
persons  specified in this item who held citizenship of   another
state  shall  be  citizens of the Republic of Lithuania,  is   in
conflict  with Paragraph 2 of Article 12 of the Constitution   of
the Republic of Lithuania.
      14.  To recognize that the provision "provided that   these
persons  or their children, grandchildren or  great-grandchildren
have  not  repatriated from Lithuania" of Item 1 (wording of   17
September 2002, Official Gazette Valstybės žinios, 2002, No.  95-
4087)  of Paragraph 1 of Article 1 of the Republic of   Lithuania
Law  on  Citizenship  is  in conflict with  Article  29  of   the
Constitution   of  the  Republic  of  Lithuania  and  with    the
constitutional principle of a state under the rule of law.
      15. To recognize that Paragraph 3 (wording of 17  September
2002,  Official Gazette Valstybės žinios, 2002, No. 95-4087)   of
Article  17 of the Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship,   to
the extent that it does not establish the requirement to renounce
the held citizenship of another state when implementing the right
to citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania, is in conflict  with
Paragraph 2 of Article 12 of the Constitution of the Republic  of
Lithuania.
      16.  To recognize that the provision "provided that   these
persons  or their children, grandchildren or  great-grandchildren
have  not repatriated" of Item 1 (wording of 17 September   2002,
Official  Gazette  Valstybės  žinios,  2002,  No.  95-4087)    of
Paragraph  1  of Article 17 of the Republic of Lithuania Law   on
Citizenship is in conflict with Article 29 of the Constitution of
the  Republic of Lithuania and with the constitutional  principle
of a state under the rule of law.
      17. To recognize that Paragraph 2 (wording of 17  September
2002,  Official Gazette Valstybės žinios, 2002, No. 95-4087)   of
Article 18 of the Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship was in
conflict  with Paragraph 2 of Article 12 of the Constitution   of
the Republic of Lithuania.
      18. To recognize that Paragraph 2 (wording of 6 April 2006,
Official Gazette Valstybės žinios, 2006, No. 46-1645) of  Article
18 of the Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship is in conflict
with  Paragraph  2  of  Article 12 of the  Constitution  of   the
Republic of Lithuania.
      19. To recognize that Paragraph 2 (wording of 6 April 2006,
Official Gazette Valstybės žinios, 2006, No. 46-1645) of  Article
20 of the Republic of Lithuania Law on Citizenship, to the extent
that  it  established  that  a  person  who  wants  to    restore
citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania shall not be required to
renounce  the held citizenship of another state, is in   conflict
with  Paragraph  2  of  Article 12 of the  Constitution  of   the
Republic of Lithuania. 
      20.  To  recognize that the provision "Citizenship of   the
Republic  of  Lithuania may also be granted by way of   exception
without  applying  conditions  for the granting  of   citizenship
provided  for  in Article 12 of this Law when it is  related   to
public  interest or glorification of the name of the Republic  of
Lithuania  by representing Lithuania" of Paragraph 1 (wording  of
18  July 2006, Official Gazette Valstybės žinios, 2006,  No.  81-
3186)  of  Article  16  of  the Republic  of  Lithuania  Law   on
Citizenship is in conflict with Paragraph 2 of Article 12 of  the
Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania. 
      21. To recognize that Paragraph 2 (wording of 17  September
2002,  Official Gazette Valstybės žinios, 2002, No. 95-4088)   of
Article 2 of the Republic of Lithuania Law on the  Implementation
of  the Law on Citizenship is in conflict with Article 29 of  the
Constitution   of  the  Republic  of  Lithuania  and  with    the
constitutional principle of a state under the rule of law.
      22.  To recognize that the provision "departure for   one's
ethnical  homeland  or settlement there shall be  considered   as
repatriation" of Paragraph 4 (wording of 15 March 1994,  Official
Gazette  Valstybės  žinios, 1994, No. 22-347) of Item 2  of   the
Republic  of  Lithuania  Supreme  Council  Resolution  "On    the
Procedure for Implementation of the Republic of Lithuania Law  on
Citizenship" of 10 December 1991 was in conflict, as to its form,
with Article 12 of the Constitution of the Republic of  Lithuania
and  with the constitutional principle of a state under the  rule
of  law, and, as to its content, it was in conflict with  Article
29 of the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania and with  the
constitutional principle of a state under the rule of law.
      23.  To recognize that the provision "departure for   one's
ethnical  homeland  or settlement there shall be  considered   as
repatriation"  of Paragraph 5 (wording of 18 July 1994,  Official
Gazette  Valstybės  žinios, 1994, No. 56-1098) of Item 2 of   the
Republic  of  Lithuania  Supreme  Council  Resolution  "On    the
Procedure for Implementation of the Republic of Lithuania Law  on
Citizenship" of 10 December 1991 was in conflict, as to its form,
with Article 12 of the Constitution of the Republic of  Lithuania
and  with the constitutional principle of a state under the  rule
of  law, and, as to its content, it was in conflict with  Article
29 of the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania and with  the
constitutional principle of a state under the rule of law. 
      This  ruling of the Constitutional Court is final and   not
subject to appeal.
      The  ruling is promulgated in the name of the Republic   of
Lithuania.

Justices of the Constitutional Court: Armanas Abramavičius
                                      Toma Birmontienė
                                      Egidijus Kūris
                                      Kęstutis Lapinskas
                                      Zenonas Namavičius
                                      Ramutė Ruškytė
                                      Vytautas Sinkevičius
                                      Stasys Stačiokas
                                      Romualdas Kęstutis Urbaitis