Citizenship in the Central African Republic is set forth in the 1961 nationality code, as amended most recently in 1984. The code provides that the child of one Central African parent obtains nationality, wherever the child is born; but also that a child born in the country of two foreign parents can acquire nationality by declaration while still a minor. The 1984 amendments repealed a 1966 provision that naturalisation required 35 years residence, to restore the previous requirement for 5 years residence.
The law stipulates the conditions under which a woman who marries a Central African acquires Central African nationality. However, it does not allow Central African women to pass their citizenship to their foreign spouses.
The UN Committee on the Rights of the Child has expressed concern over the low levels of birth registration in the Central African Republic, which has led to violations of the right to a nationality for children whose birth has not been registered.
The ethno-religous violence that broke out in the Central African Republic in 2013 has been accompanied by accusations that many Muslims are of Chadian origin and not entitled to Central African nationality.