Palestinians Buying Caribbean Citizenships


Without leaving his home in Dubai, Hadi Mezawi, a Palestinian, recently received a brand-new Dominican passport after sending a $100,000 contribution to the Caribbean island, My Fox New York reports; this is apparently a very common practice theses days.

Many Palestinians are not recognized as belonging to any country. In Dubai, Mr. Mezawi said, he keeps meeting fellow Dominica passport holders, mostly people of Iranian and Palestinian background, My Fox reports. “The more they fight over there, the more political problems there are, the more applications we get here,” said Victor Doche, the managing director of a company that offers condos and citizenship to approved buyers in St. Kitts.

These “investor visas” are offered in many countries, including the United States, but the Caribbean countries offer a smooth path to citizenship lasting as little as 90 days. There’s also no need to ever live on the islands, or even visit, My Fox reports. St. Kitts closed its program to Iranians in December 2011 after Iranian students stormed the British Embassy in Tehran. Iranians had been a big customer of investor visas beforehand.

Grenada has hinted it may revive its program, which was suspended after the Sept. 11 terror attacks in the United States. The island closed the program for fear that passports could unknowingly be sold to terrorists, My Fox reports. Antigua and Barbuda also is launching a St. Kitts-model citizenship program to invest money in the debt-ridden islands.

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