Written answers

Tuesday, 22 October 2019

Department of Justice and Equality

Refugee Resettlement Programme

Photo of James BrowneJames Browne (Wexford, Fianna Fail)
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247. To ask the Tánaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality when the commitment to admit 4,000 persons under the relocation and resettlement programmes will be met; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [43070/19]

Photo of David StantonDavid Stanton (Cork East, Fine Gael)
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In 2015, as part of Ireland's response to the migration crisis in central and southern Europe, the Government established the Irish Refugee Protection Programme (IRPP). Under this programme, the Government committed to accepting up to 4,000 people into the State, primarily through a combination of the EU Relocation Programme and the UNHCR's Refugee Resettlement Programme

The Government Decision to accept 4,000 persons into the State did not contain a deadline.  However, the relocation mechanism did carry a time limit of approximately two years to end on 31 December 2017. This time limit was extended to 31 March 2018.  In total, 1,022 people were welcomed into Ireland under the EU relocation mechanism, which fulfilled Ireland's commitment to this strand of the Programme

I can inform the Deputy that a total of 2,661 people have arrived in Ireland to date under the various strands of the IRPP, 57 of whom are unaccompanied minors.  

An IRPP mission to Lebanon in March 2019 selected 331 refugees for resettlement to Ireland. I can inform the Deputy that 53 programme refugees arrived in early September and a further 30 programme refugees arrived this month, the majority of whom were interviewed and selected during this mission to Lebanon.

A selection mission to Jordan in July 2019 saw approximately 270 programme refugees interviewed by the IRPP. This will complete Ireland’s commitment to admit 1,985 programme refugees under the resettlement strand of the IRPP.The remaining contingents are due to arrive in Ireland by the end of 2019. 

The IRPP programme also includes the IRPP Humanitarian Admission Programme under which Irish citizens, programme refugees, Convention refugees and persons with subsidiary protection can apply for family members to come to Ireland where those persons are living in the top 10 refugee generating countries.  Given the volume of proposals received to date, it is expected that those now received will be sufficient to enable 740 places under the Programme to be filled, an additional 210 places from the originally envisaged amount of 530. 119 people from this Programme have already arrived in the state.

The following table shows the current state of commitments made and the number of persons welcomed to Ireland as part of the IRPP.

Commitments and Arrivals as part of the IRPP

Commitment Arrivals Remaining
EU Relocation Strand (concluded on 31 March 2018) 1,022 1,022 -
Of which are unaccompanied minors 6 6 -
UNHCR-led Resettlement Strand 1,985 1,418 567
Calais Special Project 41 41 -
Unaccompanied minors:  Greece 36 - 36
Total unaccompanied minors 77 41 36
IRPP Humanitarian Admission Programme 2018/19 740 119 621
Mediterranean search and rescue missions
Adults 154 54 100
Unaccompanied minors 9 7 2
Total from search and Rescue missions 163 61 102
Mechanism as yet undecided 13 - 13
Total IRPP Commitment/Arrivals 4,000 2,661 1,339


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