News Stories, 10 July 2001
GENEVA – Uruguay has passed a law approving the 1961 Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness.
Uruguay will be an official party to this Convention once the instruments of ratification have been deposited with the UN Treaty Office in New York.
As of January 2001, there were 53 states parties to the 1954 Convention Relating to the status of Stateless Persons, and 23 states parties to the 1961 Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness. Uruguay's accession will bring the number to 24.
UNHCR launched a campaign in 1998 to increase the number of signatories to the statelessness conventions. Since then, nine additional countries have signed on to the 1954 Convention and four have acceded to the 1961 Convention.
Stateless people – those who are not considered a national of any state – can face a multitude of difficulties, including being unable to go to school, travel, work or even marry and register the birth of a child. A person may become stateless because of conflicting laws or changes in state sovereignty.