In a scenario in which a pregnant Russian woman were to give birth while visiting the International Space Station, and if she were to give birth while on the American side of the ISS, would that baby be an American citizen based on America's Birthright Citizenship law?

In other words, does America's Birthright Citizenship law apply to the American side/sections of the ISS?

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    $\begingroup$ space law is absolutely on-topic. $\endgroup$ – uhoh Apr 23 '19 at 22:17
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    $\begingroup$ Note that it's generally assumed that a zero-gee + cosmic ray environment will very likely lead to pregnancy complications, so the scenario is unlikely to actually occur. $\endgroup$ – Russell Borogove Apr 23 '19 at 23:37
  • $\begingroup$ Does a child born in a US ship get US citizenship? Space law is not that different from sea law. $\endgroup$ – Pere Nov 12 at 18:05

Seems Like It

Absurd hypotheticals aside, the Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA) specifies in Article V:

[E]ach Partner shall retain jurisdiction and control over the elements it registers...and over personnel in or on the Space Station who are its nationals.

This ESA resource summarizes:

The Intergovernmental Agreement allows the Space Station Partners States to extend their national jurisdiction in outer space, so the elements they provide (e.g. laboratories) are assimilated to the territories of the Partners States.

For ESA astronauts/modules, I believe this means property/jurisdiction of the EU.

This article interviewing a "space lawyer" explains it essentially as:

multiple embassies floating right over our heads

I think it's fair to say that if a Russian woman gave birth in, say, the Destiny module it would probably be treated the same as if she had walked into the U.S. and given birth. Of course, the U.S. and Russia could just as easily say that they are making an exception to the IGA for an unorthodox situation and that would probably be the end of discussion.

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    $\begingroup$ "Jurisdiction of the EU" Given the differences in laws and jurisdictions between member states, how would that work there? Which law would be applied? $\endgroup$ – Eth Apr 24 '19 at 9:06
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    $\begingroup$ The second link adds: "The European States are being treated as one homogenous entity, called the European Partner on the Space Station. But any of the European States may extend their respective national laws and regulations to the European elements, equipment and personnel." This is almost more confusing. I'm not very familiar with what jurisdiction the EU has vs. member states, and I'm not sure if the EU and the aforementioned "European Partner" consist of the same member states, so I won't venture a guess here. $\endgroup$ – ben Apr 24 '19 at 17:20
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    $\begingroup$ Well, this clearly deserves its own question then $\endgroup$ – Eth Apr 24 '19 at 18:04

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