The government approved an abbreviated procedure for Venezuelans who request refuge

The government approved an abbreviated procedure for Venezuelans who request refuge

The Refugee Commission (CORE)which operates under the orbit of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MRREE) approved an abbreviated procedure for Venezuelans who request refuge in the Uruguaybased on compliance with a series of basic requirements.

The pilot plan communicated by the Foreign Ministry will exempt refugee applicants of this nationality from carrying out an interview to access the legal status of “refugee at first sight” in the Uruguay.

The new procedure aims to provide a solution to the processing of refugee applications that remain pending, and to respond to the commitment to provide international protection to people who require it according to Law 18,076.

The national government reported that it bases its decision on “the humanitarian situation prevailing in Venezuelawhich has caused the displacement of more than 7.7 million (people), of which the vast majority—more than 6.5 million—have been welcomed by countries of Latin America and the Caribbean“.

As of December 31, 2023, the CORE registered some 24,000 pending asylum applications, of which 15% corresponded to Venezuelan nationals. According to the agency, more than 90% of Venezuelan applicants agreed to the refugee request, something they understand demonstrates “a genuine need for protection.”

To the decision adopted by the CORE must be added the decree that the MRREE approved in recent days, which created residency by roots, a figure that will allow solving the situation of more than 20,000 people who enter as refugee applicants, but do not comply with the conditions to access that legal status.

What is the pilot plan for refugee applicants for Venezuelans like?

The pilot plan for this prima facie determination of refugee status reaches those Venezuelans who, being within the national territory at the time of approval of this resolution and having initiated a refugee application, meet the following criteria:

  • Refugee applications pending analysis by the CORE at the date of approval of this program.
  • Possession of any identity, travel, civil registry or any other type of documentation that allows establishing the Venezuelan nationality of the beneficiaries and their families.
  • For children and adolescents, possess documentation that establishes their affiliation, regardless of its current validity (e.g. acceptance of expired documentation) or other formal requirements (e.g. legalization).
  • Physical presence and habitual residence in Uruguay (verification of migratory movements through the National Immigration Directorate).
  • Lack of criminal record in Uruguay and criminal records registered with Interpol (Uruguay).
  • Lack of another residence permit granted in Uruguay.

This procedure is based on a verification mechanism, a presumption of inclusion and contact with the beneficiary without an eligibility interview being carried out. In the case of people who do not meet these criteria, the regular procedure will continue, with an eligibility interview.

In an initial phase, the program aims to prioritize protection risk profiles or those with specific needs, such as families with children, survivors of gender-based violence, people with disabilities, older people, in situations of economic vulnerability, among others.

Likewise, the MRREE clarifies that in the same sense the regular procedure will continue in situations where there are credibility problems and/or well-founded reasons to consider that the person has committed acts subject to exclusion.

Regarding the implementation of this new regulation, the Permanent Secretariat of the CORE will in the coming days identify the applications that meet the established requirements, and prepare a list of the beneficiaries so that they can subsequently be notified.

Source: Ambito

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