The applicant challenged the Constitutionality of the Law on Citizenship, requiring Russian citizens who want to renounce their citizenship to have another citizenship, or a guarantee of being able to acquire a different citizenship. The Court determined that Russian citizens have the right to change their citizenship, but not an unconditional right to renounce it, referring to article 15 of the UDHR and the European Convention on Nationality. The prohibition on renunciation of Russian nationality with the aim of becoming a stateless person has been found to be in accordance with the Constitution of the Russian Federation.
National: Articles 1, 2, 4 (parts 1 and 2), 6 (parts 1 and 3), 15 (part 1), 17 (parts 1 and 2), 18, 45 (part 1) and 55 of the Constitution of Russian Federation; Article 20 (point «в») of the Federal Law "On the Citizenship of Russian Federation" (of 31 May 2002).
International: Article 15 of the Universal Declaration on Human Rights; Article 4(b) of the European Convention on Nationality.
The applicant attempted to renounce Russian citizenship without having a different citizenship or a guarantee of acquisition of another citizenship, but his request was denied. He approached the Constitutional Court to declare the relevant provisions of the Russian Citizenship Law as Unconstitutional.
The applicant claimed that the anti-statelessness limitation on his right to renounce his Russian citizenship was not in compliance with articles 1, 2, 4 (parts 1 and 2), 6 (parts 1 and 3), 15 (part 1), 17 (parts 1 and 2), 18, 45 (part 1) and 55 of the Constitution of Russian Federation.
The Court reasoned as follows:
"In accordance with generally accepted principles and norms of international law and of the Constitution of Russian Federation, the citizens of Russian Federation are guaranteed the right to change their citizenship, but not the right to unilaterally renounce it. Based on that, article 20 (point «в») of the Federal Law "On the Citizenship of Russian Federation" stipulates existence of another citizenship, or a guarantee of acquisition of another citizenship, as one of the conditions for renouncing Russian citizenship. The resulting prohibition on renunciation of citizenship with the aim of acquiring the status of a stateless person is in accordance with international practice, in particular with the European Convention on Nationality of 1997, which sets the goal of avoidance of statelessness as one of the fundamental principles for the citizenship norms of State Parties."
The conclusion reached by the Court was that relevant citizenship legislation does not interfere with the applicant's constitutional rights.
The case was declared inadmissible, as the relevant national legislation does not affect constitutional rights of the applicant.