Politicians on the German right have expressed their fury after it was revealed their country's foreign ministry has begun advertising citizenship in Arabic. (Photo by Alex Grimm/Getty Images)


Fury after Germany starts advertising citizenship in Arabic


Politicians on the German Right have expressed their fury after it was revealed their country’s foreign ministry has started advertising citizenship opportunities in Arabic.

The outrage centres on the state-run Germany @ Arab World X account, which posted a thread in late March publicly announcing recent changes made to German citizenship law.

“Many have waited years and decades for this, and now it is finally in law,” the post said.

“The new citizenship law will apply from June 26, 2024 to everyone who wants to become German.”

The account went on to detail in Arabic the numerous changes, noting that those who wish to become Germans will no longer be forced to surrender any non-EU citizenships they hold.

It added that the process of becoming a German citizen can take as little as three years, depending on the circumstances. Migrants who formerly did contract work in the now-defunct Communist East Germany will not even be asked to prove they can speak German.

While the post did mention there remained certain requirements for becoming German – migrants have to be able to support themselves financially barring “exceptions”, and any potential candidates must not be either racist or antisemitic – many fear the post is effectively an attempt to encourage more migration.

Politicians from both the Christian Democrats and the populist AfD party have railed against the foreign ministry’s decision to allow the post, with both groups accusing the State of demeaning the value of the German passport.

“Citizenship is not just some cheap item in the online shop but the most valuable asset that states have to offer,” said Martin Huber, the General Secretary of Bavaria’s Christian Social Union.

AfD Bundestag MP Martin Sichert described the centre-Left Government as “courting Arabs who have no knowledge of German” with the offer of citizenship.

Manuel Hagel, a senior member of the Christian Democratic Union, called on the country’s foreign minister Annalena Baerbock to “correct” the situation by reversing course.

The possibility of obtaining an EU passport, Hagel argued, should “not be a means of to lure foreigners to Germany”.

“You can’t actively invite everyone who wants to become German to Germany,” he said, adding that citizenship should only ever be granted to someone after they had successfully integrated into German society and not used as a lure before that point.

Despite the criticism, Germany’s foreign ministry has opted to stick to its guns, arguing that the Arabic social media post was completely justified.

“The German Centres provide current and reliable information worldwide on political and social developments in Germany,” it said.

“This also includes information on the current legal situation, such as nationality law.”