CITIZENSHIP is in the news – again. The COVID-19 outbreak has raised questions about the responsibility of governments for their people overseas, caught up in situations outside their control. The press has been talking about “Australians” who have been “abandoned” in Wuhan or Hubei province.
It is not clear whether these are people who have Australian citizenship or who have permanent residency. It would appear that some may have dual Australian/Chinese citizenship and that this has complicated what China would allow in terms of evacuations and therefore what Australia was able to do to help them. Some of those left behind have talked about feeling abandoned by Australia. I’m sure I would feel the same, in their situation.