'I am not a dual citizen': Liberal Senator Arthur Sinodinos denies Greek citizenship

Federal Industry Minister Arthur Sinodinos has denied allegations he could be a dual Greek citizen, claiming his parliamentary eligibility is not in doubt.

If proven true, the Liberal politician would become ineligible to sit in parliament under section 44 of the Australian constitution.

The senator was born to late parents Dionysos and California Sinodinos, both born in the Greek island of Cephalonia. Under Greek law, any child who has a mother or father born in Greece automatically acquires Greek citizenship by birth, without the need to apply for it.

Federal Industry Minister Arthur Sinodinos has denied allegations he could be a dual Greek citizen, after claims his parliamentary eligibility was in doubt due to his ancestry. Picture: 7 News
Federal Industry Minister Arthur Sinodinos has denied allegations he could be a dual Greek citizen, after claims his parliamentary eligibility was in doubt due to his ancestry. Picture: 7 News

The NSW born senator labelled reports he holds a dual Australian and Greek citizenship “false” despite refusing to comment on whether he has renounced his Greek birth status.

“Media reports today that I hold dual citizenship are false. Categorically, I am not a dual citizen. I have never held Greek citizenship,” he said in a media statement on Tuesday.

“I was born in Newcastle and have lived all my life in Australia. My citizenship status has never been in question.

“I have recently confirmed with the Government of Greece that I have never held Greek citizenship.”

Senator Sinodinos’ dual citizenship cloud marks the fourth Federal minister to be in question in as many weeks.

In late July, Queensland Nationals senator Matt Canavan stood down as Resources Minister after discovering his mother had applied for Italian citizenship on his behalf in 2006.

The Liberal senator's late parents were both born on the Greek island of Cephalonia. Picture: AAP
The Liberal senator's late parents were both born on the Greek island of Cephalonia. Picture: AAP

Last week Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce released documentation proving he's renounced his New Zealand citizenship after it was revealed he was a dual citizen by descent, by his Kiwi-born father.

The Agriculture Minister declined to resign as Nationals leader and from cabinet.

Two days later it was revealed his Nationals deputy Fiona Nash was a dual British citizen by descent due to her Scottish father, but has refused to quit the cabinet.

Barnaby Joyce has referred himself to the High Court. Source: AAP
Barnaby Joyce has referred himself to the High Court. Source: AAP

The High Court will now decide if Mr Joyce and his fellow National senators Nash and Canavan can remain in Federal Parliament.

Last month, Greens senators Scott Ludlam and Larissa Waters quit after discovering they were dual citizens of New Zealand and Canada, respectively.

Ms Waters last week revealed plans to recontest the seat she was forced to give up.

Other senators also embroiled in the dual citizenship debacle are One Nation senator Malcolm Roberts and South Australian senator Nick Xenophon, believed to be dual British citizens by descent.

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