13,000 new Swedes
On June 6, Sweden celebrated the National Day and at the same time nearly 13,000 people had reason to celebrate their new Swedish citizenship.
During the first five months this year, 12,991 people received their Swedish citizenships, and since last year’s National Day that makes 30,253 new Swedes, according to statistics from Migrationsverket (the Migration Board). Most of them hail from Iraq, followed by Poland, Somalia, and Thailand. The citizenships that the County Administrative Boards hand out to Nordic citizens are not counted.
That Iraq represents the country from which most new citizens come, is due to the requirement of five years living in Sweden in order to become a citizen. Many Iraqis sought asylum in Sweden in conjunction with the violence that developed there in 2009, they were granted asylum, and quickly applied for citizenship. Apart from those seeking asylum, many of the new Swedes have also come here as gainfully employed, students, or by connection. On April 1st next year, a new law comes into effect. It states that children will automatically be granted Swedish citizenship if one of the parents is a citizen. Those who have lost their Swedish citizenships because of rules aimed at avoiding dual citizenships will also be able to get theirs back.