Jussuf Abbo was born in 1890 in Safed, a town that at the time was in the Palestine region of the Ottoman Empire. His nationality at birth was Ottoman (Palestinian Ottoman). From 1948, Safed became part of Israel.

In 1911, Abbo emigrated to Germany, travelling with his Ottoman Empire passport. In 1934, he was unable to leave Germany and emigrate to the United Kingdom because he was stateless. He had not obtained German nationality during his long stay in Germany. The Ottoman Empire had come to an end in 1923. He had no passport and his country of birth, the Ottoman Empire, no longer existed.

In 1935, helped by an official at the Egyptian embassy and because his father had been a native of Egypt, Abbo managed to obtain an Egyptian passport, allowing him to emigrate to the United Kingdom. The passport he obtained in 1935 (see below) was issued as a replacement of a fictitious previous Egyptian passport, issued in 1924. This was undoubtedly done to reinforce credibility of his Egyptian citizenship thus facilitating his escape from Nazi Germany.
The Egyptian passport of Jussuf Abbo
From 1890 until 1923, Jussuf Abbo had Ottoman (Palestinian Ottoman) citizenship and, officially, from 1924 until 1953 he had Egyptian citizenship, even though, as far as it is known, he never set foot on Egyptian soil during his lifetime. He never obtained German, British or Israeli citizenship.