Visit our online conference on the problem of statelessness!


The online conference „Forgotten Europeans“ that deals with the issue of stateless persons, in particular the permanent residents of Estonia and Latvia, will be held this Friday, 10th of December, at 14:00 (Estonian time, CET 13:00).

The participants of the conference will try to answer the most acute questions about the phenomenon of stateless persons. Statelessness in Estonia and Latvia: is it a perpetual problem? Does statelessness in Estonia and Latvia violate international obligations? What is the position of European law? Are large groups of stateless permanent residents in Estonia and Latvia discriminated against? Must the EU help to solve the statelessness problem? Should the EU introduce the EU citizen passport and issue it to stateless persons? Could stateless persons attain the rights of EU citizens, including the right to free movement and the right to participate in European elections?

Among the participants of the conference are MEPs Yana Toom and Nils Ušakovs, human rights advocates Laura van Waas, Boriss Cilevics and Kari Käsper, lawyers Aleksejs Dimitrovs and Vadim Poleštšuk.

The online conference „Forgotten Europeans“ is held within the framework of the Conference on the Future of Europe with the goal of collecting ideas and proposals that could resolve the issue of statelessness, including those from the audience. Please leave your comments, questions and proposals. They will influence the outcome of the conference, which will then be incorporated into the proposals of the Conference on the Future of Europe and may well be implemented.

The online conference „Forgotten Europeans“ will be held THIS FRIDAY, 10TH OF DECEMBER, 14:00 – 16:00  Estonian time (CET 13:00 – 15:00). You can watch the conference HERE.

Direct link:

The working language of the conference is English, with Russian and Estonian interpreting available.

You can already leave your comments, questions and proposals HERE.

Direct link:

Thank you in advance!

About the participants:

Boriss Cilevics is a Chair of the PACE Committee on Legal Affairs and Human Rights. He has prepared more than 30 reports which form the basis for PACE’s resolutions and recommendations

Aleksejs Dimitrovs is a legal advisor for the Greens/EFA Group in the European Parliament. He has been involved in a number of cases in the Latvian Constitutional Court, the UN Human Rights Committee and the European Court of Human Rights

Kari Käsper is Associate Legal Officer at the Representation for the Nordic and Baltic Countries of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), which has a mandate to identify stateless people, prevent and reduce statelessness around the world, as well as to protect the rights of stateless people

Dr. Vadim Poleštšuk (Moderator) is a Policy Adviser at the European Parliament (Renew Europe). Vadim obtained his PhD degree from the University of Groningen (the Netherlands) on a thesis dedicated to access to citizenship and limits to EU Member States’ power

Yana Toom is a Member of the European Parliament (Renew Europe / Centre Party, Estonia) and Vice-Chair and Coordinator of the EP Committee of Petitions (PETI). She repeatedly broached the subject of statelessness and the rights of stateless people in the European Parliament and recently supported the petitions on the rights of persons with “undetermined citizenship”

Nils Ušakovs is a Member of the European Parliament (Socialists & Democrats Group / Harmony, Latvia)

Dr. Laura van Waas is a founder and Co-Director of the Institute on Statelessness and Inclusion, the first and the only human rights NGO dedicated to promoting the right to a nationality and the rights of stateless people globally. She is also an Assistant Professor at Tilburg Law School and Editor in Chief (with Professor Michelle Foster) of the Statelessness and Citizenship Review

The conference is organised by the MEP Yana Toom under the auspices of Renew Europe, the third largest group in the European Parliament with 100 MEPs from 23 EU countries defending European values and liberal principles. The online conference is held within the framework of the Conference on the Future of Europe.

See you at the conference!