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Montevideo, July 13th 2024 - 09:54 UTC

 

 

Uruguay creates “Residence by rootedness” legal figure for asylum seekers

Friday, May 17th 2024 - 11:55 UTC
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“They enter as refugees, but they are not refugees, so this limbo is generated,” Paganini explained “They enter as refugees, but they are not refugees, so this limbo is generated,” Paganini explained

Uruguayan authorities came up with the so-called “Residence by rootedness” (“residencia por arraigo”) solution to help some 20,000 migrants who had their asylum requests rejected but would otherwise need a consular visa to stay in the country, it was announced in Montevideo.

The presidential decree providing a “legal exit” for those fleeing their country -most notably Cuban nationals- was also signed Wednesday by the Ministries of Interior and Foreign Affairs. “Basically, we are talking about people of Cuban origin or from other countries who are required to have a visa,” Foreign Minister Omar Paganini explained. The provisional solution “targets more than 20,000 people who are in an irregular situation,” Paganini also noted.

“It is a temporary solution for all the people who have already started the process,” he added. In his view, the measure would not foster immigration because only those “who have family or labor roots” in the country are eligible. “This also allows to solve the issue of family reunification, which is one of the most important from the point of view of their rights,” he went on.

Most Cubans “need visas to enter” Uruguay “but don't have them,” Paganini elaborated. “They enter as refugees, but they are not refugees, so this limbo is generated,” he went on.

Under the new regulations, these people may renounce their asylum requests and apply for legal residency in one of the following three modalities: employment or self-employment (permanent), family roots (permanent), and training roots (temporary, renewable). In time, these people will also be eligible for Uruguayan citizenship.

Uruguay's Refugee Commission (CORE) is currently handling some 24,000 asylum applications, the Foreign Ministry stressed.

Categories: Politics, Uruguay.

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