I'm a Turkish citizen who is studying in Germany for the last 5 years. As one might not know, in Turkey, there is compulsory military service for every men. But, I don't want to do it (I don't want to be physically present on Turkish soil). There is also the option of paying ~€6000 and just doing your military service for 3weeks, but I don't want to do it either; I don't have that much money for that kind of thing.

Now, I want to become a German citizen by naturalisation, but Germany doesn't allow me to have dual citizenship unless I have no other options.

To do that, I want to renounce my Turkish citizenship but the government will be asking me to do my military service in a couple of months and I have no other excuse to give them, so I'll be a deserter, and the Turkish government doesn't allow anyone to renounce their citizenship if they deserted from their military service. So, long story short, there is no way I can renounce my Turkish citizenship.

My question is, in 3 years, I'll be able to apply for a German citizenship but I won't be be able to renounce my Turkish citizenship (due to being a deserter). Will the German government recognise my situation and allow me to apply for German citizenship? Have there been similar cases before? If so, what was their result?

Note that, criminals are not allowed to apply for a German citizenship, so I don't know whether the German government would consider being a deserter as a being criminal.

  • 3
    Might be worthwhile to move to expatriates.stackexchange.com which is much more specialised in questions of citizenship .
    – gnasher729
    Oct 5, 2020 at 15:23
  • 2
    That said, you are obviously free to denounce your citizenship and Turkey is free not to accept it, but for Germany your action might be enough.
    – gnasher729
    Oct 5, 2020 at 15:26
  • 8
    @gnasher729 German and Turkish law are both law. This site has countless questions restricted to certain jurisdictions. Indeed, if such questions were forbidden the site probably wouldn't be viable. This question is on topic for both sites. Answers here will tend to be restricted to the legal analysis, while answer at Expatriates may include more information about practical matters, if any such information may be helpful.
    – phoog
    Oct 5, 2020 at 18:25
  • 7
    For 2nd, 3rd generation Turks, court rulings have allowed these exceptions (Military service deemed unreasonable): 2010-10-26: Einbürgerung ohne türkischen Militärdienst | Rechtslupe. As a native born (which I assume you are), this might not be the case. You should make an appointment now and ask for an assessment for a future application under these conditions. Oct 6, 2020 at 0:17
  • 4
    For something this serious, you should not rely on a website (research is good though). IMHO, you would be well advised to do your research and immediately hire a local German attorney that specializes in immigration.
    – gatorback
    Dec 11, 2020 at 15:59

1 Answer 1


Note that, criminals are not allowed to apply for a German citizenship, so I don't know whether the German government would consider being a deserter as a being criminal.

First of all, they would deny a criminal German citizenry, but that goes only for crimes, that are also illegal in Germany (Sec. 12a § 2 Nationality Act, § 12a Abs. 2 StAG). Were you - for instance - convicted for muder you couldn't become a German citizen. Desertion in that sense however is not a criminal offence in Germany, so you're good.

Regarding double citizenship, Sec. 12 § 1 2nd sentence no. 2 Nationality Act (§ 12 Abs. 1 S. 2 Nr. 2 StAG) allows you to keep your original citizenship, if the country of origin "regularly refuses to grant release from citizenship", which should be the case here. Therefore, you could become a German citizen according to Sec. 10 Nationality Act (§ 10 StAG).

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