The Irish government on Tuesday approved an Afghan Admission Program, which will allow Afghan nationals living in Ireland to apply to bring their close family members to the country to live with them.
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Under the program, 500 additional places will be provided for Afghan family members and Afghan nationals living in Ireland on or before September 1, 2021 will be able to apply to nominate up to four close family members who are currently living in Afghanistan or who have fled to a neighboring country, said a statement published on the Irish government's website.
Eligible family members will be granted a residence permission that allows them immediate access to the labor market, without the need for an employment permit, the statement said.
The program, including the detailed eligibility criteria and the application process, will be developed over the coming months, with applications opening in December, it said, adding that an appeals process for unsuccessful applicants will also be established.
"We will be prioritizing those who are especially vulnerable in terms of the risk to their freedom and safety, such as older people, children, single female parents, single women and girls, people with disabilities and people whose previous employment exposes them to greater risk, for example United Nations (UN) and European Union (EU) employees and people who worked for civil society organizations," said Ireland's Justice Minister Heather Humphreys in the statement.
According to the statement, more than 670 Afghan nationals have already been granted permissions to reside in Ireland so far this year. ■
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