11

I'm assuming they just don't go to the country where they are avoiding the army conscription. Am I right in my assumption?

If they have a different passport showing citizenship etc, they can as a result travel back and forth to different countries, and not get flagged or anything. I am assuming a foreign country can't stop someone's passport?

Can Interpol and other organisations even get involved with situations concerning conscription, thus preventing the draft dodger who would be considered a citizen of that said country from going on holiday, and going abroad etc for general stuff?

closed as too broad by Dmitry Grigoryev, Michael, Jan, Giorgio, David Richerby Sep 5 '17 at 20:51

Please edit the question to limit it to a specific problem with enough detail to identify an adequate answer. Avoid asking multiple distinct questions at once. See the How to Ask page for help clarifying this question. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • 12
    This is a very complex question and I strongly recommend that you talk to a lawyer about it. In general, dual citizenship doesn't relieve you of the duties of either nationality: rather, it makes you liable to both. Extradition between any two countries is normally only possible for things that are crimes in both countries, but it's not clear to me how this applies to conscription. I would assume that evading conscription is illegal in most countries, even when that country isn't using conscription right now – David Richerby Sep 4 '17 at 11:53
  • 6
    What precisely do you mean by ‘draft-dodgers’? I have many friends who were born and have lived their whole lives here, but are (also) citizens of (one of) their parents’ native country and would be drafted if they went there. All these friends have gone on holiday abroad many times, just not to their (other) country of citizenship, at least not after conscription age. Does that count to you as ‘dodging’? Or are you only counting people who actively leave a country to avoid getting drafted? – Janus Bahs Jacquet Sep 4 '17 at 15:13
  • @JanusBahsJacquet thanks for that and yeah pretty much what i meant as in turkey for example i am of the age where i would be required to do army conscription as they view it as by being born by Turkish parents that makes you a turk lol but i live in England and own a uk passport only so just wanted to get a some what of a understanding of it all. I have friends from Russia etc as well who cant go back as they would he required to do the army. So i can go on holiday etc just not to the county in which i would be in a sense required for the army conscription? do your friends travel hassle free? – user67204 Sep 4 '17 at 15:28
  • 2
  • 4
    I would recommend investigating if you could renounce the citizenship that you are not interested in having. – Ángel Sep 4 '17 at 19:19
5

There are two things which seem to be mixed up here.

"Dodging a draft" may describe a specific crime, where you explicitly promised/were ordered to serve in military, but you refused. This would be considered a crime, and it might be extradictable.

"Dodging a draft" may also refer to a generic practice of avoiding being in the position of being ordered to serve. For example, in Russia one cannot be prosecuted for dodging the draft until one has been personally served a prescription notice ("povestka"), and has signed for it. In this case "dodging the draft" is not a crime at all.

To add here, there are extra rules for expats. For example, Israel explicitly gives expats a break:

As a general rule, an Israeli citizen who has left Israel with both of his/ her parents before the age of 14 (this age may be subject to change by the Israeli authorities) or a child born abroad to an Israeli parent (whose family has not returned to live in Israel) is eligible for an army deferment (not exemption). An army deferment means that the individual does not need to serve in the military as long as he/ she is residing outside of Israel.

Thus just because someone dodging a draft doesn't mean he's committing a crime (and thus Interpol cannot be involved), and there is no need to even travel on a different passport (although you definitely can).

  • so turkey cant do anything to me then? As i live abroad, born abroad and only own a UK passport I'm assuming if i was to visit Turkey then they may want me to get a Kimlic or something (id card) but travelling aboard to other countries i will be fine and just viewed as British? – user67204 Sep 5 '17 at 8:26
  • One should note that Israel is one of - according to Wikipedia - a mere dozen of states who do not grant their citizens the basic human right of conscientious objection to serving in the military. So this example is probably not the norm but rather an exception. – Alexander Kosubek Sep 5 '17 at 12:42
  • 1
    @gully0923 Turkey may want you to serve, but there is nothing it could do unless a) they prove you're a Turkish citizen and b) you visit Turkey. Since you were born in UK and would be entering on British passport, a) is quite difficult without your cooperation even for Turkey. Other countries generally won't even care, for them you're a British citizen. PS. Your other option is to pay a fee: dailysabah.com/turkey/2016/01/26/… – George Y. Sep 5 '17 at 23:58
17

I know of two countries, with real-life cases: Korea and Singapore. Both in Singapore and Korea, a man can not renounce his citizenship until he has done his military service – even if he already has another passport.

In Korea it is even more perverse. A young Korean-X man, say Korean-American, can think he is American only, and still be considered a Korean citizen by the Korean government if someone in the family (usually it's the paternal grandpa) registered his birth on the family register. That makes him automatically Korean. I know of cases where KorAm dudes came to visit Korea during summer and went home 2~3 years later, extremely fit and fluent in Korean...

There is a procedure, which changes, to defer military duty until you're too old to do it. A friend of mine even managed to live in Korea, unmolested, back in the days when Korean-X kids were shipped to the Army for three years. But you have to be careful.

As for Singapore, the problem is doubly problematic: dual citizenship is illegal, and NS is compulsory. Which means you cannot go to Singapore, ever, if you're an illegal draft-dodging dual citizen.

But that's basically only applicable to a country – a Singaporean-American draft dodger can use his American passport to go to any country, except Singapore.

  • 8
    @Alexander "The U.S. won't extradite a citizen" What makes you think that? Nobody would have an extradition treaty with the US if it wasn't reciprocal. The US does make it hard to extradite citizens but it's certainly possible. – David Richerby Sep 4 '17 at 11:44
  • 4
    @Alexander technically correct but factually incorrect. Singapore doesn't go after draft dodgers. The government is content with punishing them with slamming the door in their face, or, should they be stupid enough to come to Singapore, to send them to boot camp, and then a military prison. – user67108 Sep 4 '17 at 14:47
  • 1
    @DavidRicherby Actually, many countries might be interested in a reciprocal treaty to extradite third-country nationals. That's actually what most extradition treaties are about, explicitly or implicitly, as not extraditing your own nationals is a wide-spread practice. – Relaxed Sep 4 '17 at 17:00
  • 3
    @Alexander That really depends on the extradition treaty and the relationship between the countries. While the US actually generally will extradite its citizens, its treaty with Singapore lists extraditable offenses and draft-dodging is not one of them. The Commonwealth extradition scheme allows countries to refuse extradition for crimes having to do with military obligations. Even without that explicit exception, there's pretty much a universal rule against extradition for political offenses, and a country could probably get away with calling draft-dodging "political." – cpast Sep 4 '17 at 22:41
  • 1
    @RuiFRibeiro no idea. Never had any encounters with such cases. – user67108 Sep 5 '17 at 7:01
14

I believe that a generic answer is impossible.

  • Conscription as such is not considered a human rights violation by Western nations, any many have extradition treaties with each other. In a slightly different example, the case of an US Army deserter in Germany is making his way through the legal system. So far he has lost in court, but IIRC there are still appeals pending.
  • As a number of commenters pointed out, draft dodging is not as serious as the case of the deserter. Extradition should be somewhat less likely.
  • Avoiding the draft of enemy countries is seen as praiseworthy. South Korea won't return North Korean draft dodgers.
  • 3
    Desertion is different from avoiding conscription. I think the chances of a third party nation intervening to arrest someone avoiding conscription are extremely low. – MJeffryes Sep 4 '17 at 10:14
  • 1
    @MJeffryes, I wouldn't bet on that when it comes to NATO allies, for instance. – o.m. Sep 4 '17 at 10:40
  • 4
    @o.m. Canada did nothing to stop US draft dodgers during the Vietnam War (it wasn't a crime in Canada so wasn't eligible for extradition), and even looked the other way for deserters. – Ross Ridge Sep 4 '17 at 15:22
  • 2
    @o.m. I am pretty sure NATO has absolutely nothing at all to do with. NATO also includes countries with close ties through other channels (EU, five eyes, etc.) so you might find individual examples, e.g. through the European Arrest Warrant, but in general I think MJeffyres is correct. – Relaxed Sep 4 '17 at 17:15
  • 2
    @o.m. Canada is one of the closest allies of the United States; our alliance is so strong that we trust a Canadian officer to be the deputy commander of the US air defense system. Nevertheless, Canada sheltered US draft dodgers during the Vietnam War. – cpast Sep 4 '17 at 21:57
3

The Interpol angle is interesting. A red notice is supposed to be issued for “individuals sought for prosecution or to serve a sentence”. So if dodging the draft is a crime and the authorities care enough to prosecute it, it might lead to a red notice. It isn't necessarily so, I know countries where proving you have fulfilled your military obligations prevents you from many things but isn't actively prosecuted as a crime.

Furthermore, red notices are not supposed to be used for political purposes. Interpol has refused some red notices because the prosecution was deemed politically motivated but it has also been criticised for having weak standards and exercising insufficient control on how its member states use the system. But I don't think this provision is very useful to draft dodgers in general, except maybe in some exceptional circumstances.

In practice, less than 10000 red notices are issued every year and about 40000 are in circulation. That's not many for 190 countries and suggests that they are typically used for people suspected of serious crimes or sought for some other particular reason, not for the thousands of young men in your situation.

  • would be traveling on a British passport (British citizens) i doubt other countries will think about my background from my parents. I guess as long as there is no Interpol or arrest warrants i will be fine i'm a law aboding citizen in England and in general so 🤷🏼‍♂️hahaha – user67204 Sep 4 '17 at 17:27