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The purpose of this article is to study concepts and theories as well as the possibilities of Thailand’s legal measures and mechanisms to apply the law of naturalization to address the issue of statelessness for stateless persons who appear and live in Thailand.
Based on the study, Thailand’s nationality law is pursuant to international standards and effective enough to address statelessness for the populations who reside in Thailand. However, many of these stateless persons who have lived and assimilated in Thailand for generations are unable to access Thai nationality by naturalization. The study indicated three causes of the problem: ineffective law enforcement; outdated rules and requirements for naturalization by discretion of the Minister of Interior; and lack of some particular regulations that set out naturalization application procedures for these populations.
These abovementioned causes of the problem arise from a concept of national security and national interest. Law enforcers normally give weight to these concepts than ones about human rights. Therefore, the study proposed a three-pronged approach to solve these problems: firstly to improve law enforcement by developing tools for the competent authorities to enhance their capacity and understanding; secondly to update rules and requirements for naturalization by discretion of the Minister of Interior to address statelessness; and lastly to reform problematic laws.
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