Intelligence memos and grey zones before French courts
The Nantes Administrative Court. © OceanProd/iStock//Mark Astakhov/iStock//Indigo Publications

Running story
Intelligence memos and grey zones before French courts

The French Ministry of the Interior regularly rejects French nationality applications from foreign nationals living in France, on the grounds that they are not "loyal" to the country. Chinese, Russian, Colombian, Kurdish and Algerian citizens have all faced rejection on this basis. The refusal is based on memos from the French domestic intelligence service (DGSI), which allege, for example, close links with a foreign intelligence service, but without giving any further details. French courts are thus becoming increasingly fussy about the content of those memos.

Intelligence memos and grey zones before French courts
The Nantes Administrative Court. © OceanProd/iStock//Mark Astakhov/iStock//Indigo Publications

Algeria, France
French court overturns Algerian's nationality ruling over vague intelligence memo

A French administrative court has reversed an interior ministry decision to deny an Algerian's naturalisation that was based on a memo from the DGSI domestic intelligence agency claiming he worked with Algerian intelligence.

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French domestic spy agency's role in citizenship applications under judicial scrutiny

French courts are dealing with a growing number of counter-espionage cases involving applications for citizenship. On the basis of notes from the DGSI domestic intelligence service, which are sometimes approximate, the courts have to assess the proximity of the applicant or his or her spouse to foreign intelligence services.

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China, France
Chinese woman refused French naturalisation over husband's ties to Beijing intelligence

A French court has upheld the refusal to naturalise a Chinese national over her husband's involvement with Beijing's intelligence operations in France.

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France, Russia
Intelligence 'notes blanches', a black box of visa refusals for Russian nationals

There have been a string of visa refusals for Russian nationals suspected of being spies based on "notes blanches" prepared by the French intelligence services. Those unsigned memos can sometimes lack detail or even have inaccuracies.

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Spotlight | France, Ukraine
French intelligence service kiboshes naturalisation of Ukrainian potential asset

Despite Paris's support for Kyiv, France's domestic intelligence service remains concerned about counter-espionage. France's refusal to grant citizenship to a Ukrainian professor, based on a note from the DGSI, shines a spotlight on the service's interests in Ukraine's State representations in the French capital.

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The Nantes Administrative Court.

Running story
Intelligence memos and grey zones before French courts

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