Mgr. Klára Poláčková
Navracení státního občanství bývalým československým státním občanům po roce 1989
Restoration of the Czech citizenship to former Czechoslovakian citizens after 1989
Abstract: After 1989, Czech society and its new polity were faced with a necessity to carry out complex economic, social and political transformations as well as substantial changes to its legal order. The need to define the basic principles of the new democratic state and the new legal order, as well as the need to establish a rule of law was inevitable. Additionally, there was an urgent need for the new system to demonstrate, also by legal means, a condemnation of the past, including the approach of the past regime not only to individuals but also to the law. Under these conditions, the law has been an objective of the ongoing changes as a regulator of social reality. In addition, it has simultaneously been an instrument of these changes. This paper deals with the wide issue of transformation of the legal order in post-communist countries through a case study, an inquiry into the legal institution of the restoration of nationality. It approaches the topic from a more sociological perspective on law and, therefore, includes not only an analysis of the positive law, but also deals with the situation of adoption of specific acts. Nationality is a legal institution which fundamentally determines the position of an individual within a state. At the same time, nationality is also an expression of a ideological attitude of the state to who is (in the broadest terms) the member-citizen, and who can become one. The regulation of nationality differs from state to state since it reflects the different historical and cultural traditions of specific countries, as well as political circumstances at their formulation. This paper deals specifically with the restoration of nationality in Czechoslovakia and in the Czech Republic after 1989. First, it attempts to set a broader theoretical and factual background for the subject, by providing a more universal picture of the general doctrine of law, and more specifically, constitutional law in the process of democratic transformation. Subsequently, it briefly reviews the law in relation to nationality in Czechoslovakia and in the Czech Republic from 1948 from the moment of the communist coup. The most critical chapters deal with the legal institution of restoration of nationality in the process of the democratic transformation of Czechoslovakia and the Czech Republic after 1989, and the analysis of the legal enactments adopted accordingly (specifically Act No. 88/1990 Coll., amending the Laws on Acquisition and Loss of Nationality, Act No. 119/1990 Coll., on Judicial Rehabilitation and Act No. 193/1999 Coll., on Restoration of Citizenship to Some Former Citizens and its amendments). The former non-democratic regime largely deprived its nationals of their nationality by both administrative and criminal law means. This deprivation was implemented by the state in any case where the actions of the individual were deemed to be contrary to the duties of a Czechoslovak national. This practice was also applied to the émigrés, since emigration was considered illegal. The paper argues that the restoration of nationality has been a part of the legislation which was adopted for the purpose of abrogation (and satisfaction) of some of the acts of the former non-democratic regime which were considered unjust, and in contradiction to general democratic standards. However, the enactment of the legislation which would provide for the restoration of nationality has not been as uncomplicated, straightforward and expedient as might have been expected. This can be explained by the rather ambiguous link between Czech society (and its elites) to émigrés. Additionally, the entitlements which derive from the particular act relating to the restoration of nationality have differed significantly, while the reasons for such a difference cannot always be considered well-founded. This raises the question of equal treatment of the distinctive groups of émigrés. In general, despite nationality being a fundamental institution within a
Abstract: ny legal order, the Czech legislation in relation to nationality is still evolving, even after the fifteen years since the breakdown of the former non-democratic regime.
Klíčová slova: nationality, citizenship Czech Republic, Czechoslovakia, restoration of nationality
Jazyk práce: čeština