Birth registration is fundamental for acquiring nationality in North Macedonia because it documents where a person was born and who the parents are – links which are key to proving whether a child has acquired nationality by place of birth or descent. A considerable number of persons, especially Roma, Ashkali and Egyptians continue to be at risk of statelessness because they have not been registered at birth and are therefore unable to prove their entitlement to Macedonian nationality. The majority live in informal settlements and in extreme poverty. They are in need of legal and financial assistance to obtain documentation to prove or confirm their nationality.
Rustemov family poses for a portrait at home in Skopje. None of the children have been registered at birth © UNHCR/Roger Arnold
1. Improving birth registration to prevent statelessness.
Goal: Some 30 birth registry records officials and 30 social workers are trained to identify and provide the necessary protection to children in need in accordance with international standards.
Goal: Awareness is raised among the Roma, Ashkali and Egyptian populations about the importance of birth and personal name registration, including through the distribution of information flyers and the organization of awareness raising events.
Goal: By the end of 2017, as a result of UNHCR’s direct intervention, together with UNHCR and UNICEF joint advocacy efforts, at least 30 unregistered children from the Roma, Ashkali and Egyptian communities are registered. All cases of children lacking birth and personal name registration are registered by the year 2020.