Oz speeds up citizenship

MELBOURNE - Australia's government is seeking amendments to its citizenship law that would fast-track foreign-born athletes into becoming eligible to represent Australia.

MELBOURNE - Australia's government is seeking amendments to its citizenship law that would fast-track foreign-born athletes into becoming eligible to represent Australia.

The amendments would halve residency requirements from four years to two.

"Elite athletes who have the potential to represent Australia at an international level but need to be citizens to do so have been disadvantaged, along with some specialist professionals," Immigration and Citizenship Minister Chris Evans said in a statement yesterday.

The changes, due to be introduced in parliament next month, would open the door for Australia to naturalise Russian speed skater Tatiana Borodulina in time for the Winter Olympics next February in Vancouver, where she is regarded as a medal prospect. - Reuters

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