The Socialist Party, the ruling party in Portugal has stepped back from its attempt to severely limit applications for citizenship from descendants of Sephardic Jews of Portuguese origin. In May, the Socialists submitted a draft amendment to the 2015 law that grants citizenship to people who can prove they are descended from Jews whose families fled the Iberian Peninsula following the Inquisition. That amendment would have permitted eligibility for citizenship only for people who lived in Portugal for two years. Currently, there are no requirements for applicants to live in Portugal or learn the language.
The concern was that Portugal would have been overwhelmed with people and Portugal could have lost its identity and that people were just looking for a European passport.
Rather than enact major changes to the existing law, they decided to adopt new regulations that would specify an “objective connection” with Portugal.
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