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In the last few days Russian president Vladimir Putin has been publicly considering offering fast-track passports to Ukrainian citizens. Some sources quote concerns that the Russian government could eventually use these newly acquired citizens as a reason for military intervention. Since this problem may have occured before in history, my question is as follows:

Is it legal unter international law to distribute passports among citizens of another country?

If it is not, are there restrictions as to who is eligible for passports?

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Any country can certainly decide who it should grant citizenship status to. There is no international rule that I know of requiring that the recipient be currently a resident of the country granting citizenship. Any country may issue passports to its citizens.

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