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?


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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