Should Danish parliament have power to revoke passports?

Denmark's Minister for Immigration and Integration Mattias Tesfaye has said he does not want to hand the power to revoke passports to parliament.

Should Danish parliament have power to revoke passports?
Mattias Tesfaye. Photo: Mads Claus Rasmussen / Ritzau Scanpix

A number of political parties have called for parliament to be given the power to withdraw passports, rather than the immigration ministry.

Tesfaye said he was “not crazy about” the idea.

“I want to stick to the principles our society is built upon. I want parliament to pass laws and the government, meaning the ministries, to have responsibility (for them),” Tesfaye said.

A government bill proposes enabling the immigration minister to decide whether a person with double citizenship can have their Danish nationality revoked.

The debate comes in light of the issue of Danish nationals who have travelled to Syria in support of or to fight for militant groups.

Parties from both sides of the aisle, including the Danish People’s Party, Socialist People’s Party and Social Liberals want the decision to be in the hands of parliament, Politiken reports.

Meanwhile, Amnesty International Denmark’s head lawyer Claus Juul told the newspaper that taking the decision out of the courts would present a major problem in relation to the rule of law.

Although Tesfaye disagreed with that point, he said that a ministerial decision to revoke citizenship could be brought before a court within four weeks.

“If you are dissatisfied with the decision, you can go to court. That’s the three-way separation of power, and I think we should stick to that,” he said.

Given the serious nature of the issue, Tesfaye was asked whether it should be assessed by courts in the first instance rather than in the case of an appeal.

“Because it’s such a serious intervention, I think it’s important that we stick to our principles,” the minister responded. 


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QUIZ: Can you pass the 2022 Danish citizenship test?

If you want to become a Danish citizen, you'll have to prove your knowledge of the country's culture, history, politics and more by passing a citizenship test. Can you pass our quiz version?

QUIZ: Can you pass the 2022 Danish citizenship test?

A condition of getting Danish citizenship is to demonstrate knowledge of Danish society, culture and history by passing a citizenship test (indfødsretsprøve).

In April 2021, the previous version of the citizenship test, which consisted of 40 multiple choice questions, was supplemented with five extra questions about “Danish values” such as equality, freedom of speech and the relation between legislation and religion. 

The pass mark is 36/45 and at least four of the five Danish values questions must be answered correctly. 

Children under 12, Swedish and Norwegian citizens, and people from the Danish minority in German region Schleswig-Holstein do not need to take the citizenship test.

READ ALSO: How do Denmark’s citizenship rules compare to Sweden and Norway?

While there are 45 questions (and they’re in Danish) in the real test, we’ve compiled 15 for you to have a go at answering. They are all based on the actual test from November 2022.

The pass mark on the real test is 36/45, with at least 4 of the 5 “values” questions (the last 5 questions in the test) correctly answered. In our version, the last 3 questions are taken from the Danish values section of the real test.

The 45 questions in the real citizenship test cover a broader range of topics and styles than those covered here, so please don’t take our quiz as any certain measure of your ability to pass the real thing.