HLG - Weekly Newsletter – 17.06.2019

Jun 17,2019





  1. Al-Masry Al-Youm, “Egypt’s amended nationality law grants foreigners citizenship under new conditions”, Egypt Independent, June 10, 2019
  • The National Defense and Security Committee of the House of Representatives on Sunday approved a bill amending the Nationality Law.
  • The amendments, he added, specify conditions for granting citizenship and stipulate the prime minister’s approval to grant citizenship towards every foreigner who buys property, establishes investment projects, or make a deposit in foreign currency. A unit from the Cabinet will examine requests to acquire the Egyptian citizenship. The new citizen has to pay US$10,000 in return, according to Amer.
  • The current law, No. 173 of 2018, authorizes the Minister of the Interior to grant nationality to a foreigner who has been residing in Egypt for five consecutive years and made a deposit of not less than LE7 million. The deposit is owned by the state if the foreigner’s request is approved.




  1. Christina Muchira, “Old generation passports to be phased out September”, KBC, June 12, 2019
  • Kenyan immigration department will phase out old generation passports in September this year.
  • Interior and National Coordination Cabinet Secretary Dr Fred Matiang’i said though the state rolled out electronic passports two years ago 1.5 million Kenyans were still holding old generation passports.




  1. Morocco-Dominican Republic: Exemption of Tourist, Business Visas”, Morocco World News, June 12, 2019
  • Moroccan Foreign Minister Nasser Bourita and his counterpart in the Dominican Republic signed an agreement allowing nationals of both countries to travel the territory of the other party without tourist and business visas. This agreement specifies the conditions that the travellers must hold valid passports. Additionally, the travel must be for tourist or business purposes.
  • Dominicans and Moroccans may stay in the territory of the other party for a period of up to 60 days. However, this period is renewable for another 60 days. The total duration of the stay can not legally exceed 120 days in one year.




  1. Freeman Razemba, “Passport crisis set to ease: Govt”, The Herald, June 11, 2019
  • Government has assured the nation that the production and processing of passports is set to increase following the availability of machinery and printing paper.
  • This comes after members of the public have been complaining that the Registrar-General’s Office was taking time to process passports. Sources at the Registrar-General’s Office revealed yesterday that they were printing only 30 passports a day. Additionally, emergency passports are no longer being processed as promptly, as required by procedure.
  • In an interview yesterday, Home Affairs and Cultural Heritage Minister, Cain Mathema admitted to the dire situation, but said the issue was being resolved by Government.






  1. Isabela E.B. Leal, “Tourists from the US, Canada, Japan and Australia can now travel to Brazil visa-free”, CNN, June 17, 2019
  • Effective June 17, tourists from the United States, Canada, Japan and Australia will no longer need a visa to visit Brazil. Travelers with a valid passport will be able to explore Brazil for up to 90 days, with the possibility of extending their stay to up to 180 days (though expect a visit to the Federal Police to get the extension approved).
  • Since the announcement, Brazil has already seen increased travel interest from tourists in those four countries. In March, searches for flights from Australia to Brazil were up by 36% from the previous year. Americans experienced a similar search boom, with a 31% increase in search for flights following the news.




  1. Kathleen Harris, “Ottawa picks 11 communities for pilot immigration project”, CBC, June 14, 2019
  • The federal government has picked 11 communities from across Canada to kick off a new pilot program aimed at attracting immigrants to rural and northern communities. The goal of the program is to bring newcomers to regions confronting severe labour shortages due to a youth exodus, declining birth rate and aging population.
  • The government will begin working with communities this summer to help them identify candidates for permanent residence as early as this fall. The first newcomers under the pilot are expected to arrive in 2020.


  1. Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada, “Launching 2 new pilots: Home Child Care Provider and Home Support Worker”, Government of Canada, June 15, 2019
  • Canada is caring for its caregivers by launching 2 new pilots that will help caregivers who come to this country make it their permanent home. The Home Child Care Provider and Home Support Worker pilots will open for applications on June 18, 2019, replacing the expiring Caring for Children and Caring for People with High Medical Needs pilots.
  • Caregivers will now only receive a work permit if they have a job offer in Canada and meet standard criteria for economic immigration programs. Once working in Canada, caregivers will be able to begin gaining the required 2 years of Canadian work experience to apply for permanent residence.


  1. Sarah Leavitt, “Quebec passes bill to reform immigration system after government invokes closure”, CBC, June 16, 2019
  • After a 19-hour marathon session, members of Quebec's National Assembly have passed legislation that would allow the government to cancel roughly 16,000 immigration applications, some from people who have waited in limbo for years as their files languished in the old processing system.
  • "We are changing the immigration system in the public interest, because we have to make sure that we have an immigration tied to the needs of the labour market," Immigration Minister Simon Jolin-Barrette said before the vote. Jolin-Barrette argued the new bill will reduce immigration application waiting time from 36 months down to six months.
  • Those affected would have to submit another application under a new system, known as Arrima, put in place by the former Liberal government last September. Along with the applicants' families, the total number of people affected by the legislation amounts to roughly 50,000.




  1. Office of the Prime Minister, “Jamaica and Ghana Arranging Reciprocal Visa Free Travel”, Jamaica Information Service, June 16, 2019
  • Prime Minister Andrew Holness and the President of the Republic of Ghana, His Excellency Nana Addo Danka Akufo-Addo yesterday (Saturday, June 15) held bilateral discussions aimed at strengthening trade, investment and the movement of people, goods and services between the two countries.
  • “I am pleased to recall that Jamaica and Ghana have signed an air services agreement and we discussed today ideas of how to utilize that instrument to advance our goal of deeper engagement, as we endeavor to further deepen the relationship between peoples and nations, the President and I have mandated our Ministers of Foreign Affairs to negotiate and conclude” stated Prime Minister Holness.


United States


  1. Jordan Fabian, “Cuccinelli named acting head of Citizenship and Immigration Services”, The Hill, June 10, 2019
  • Former Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli (R) on Monday began his new job as acting director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), a controversial appointment that could set up a showdown between the White House and Senate Republicans
  • “Our nation has the most generous legal immigration system in the world and we must zealously safeguard its promise for those who lawfully come here,” Cuccinelli said in a statement distributed by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
  • USCIS did not explain the legal basis for Cuccinelli’s appointment. Under the Federal Vacancies Reform Act, an acting official must be the agency’s top deputy, another Senate-confirmed official or a senior agency official who had been in their job for at least 90 days prior to a vacancy.


  1. President Donald J. Trump is Furthering America’s Enduring Partnership with Poland”, The White House, June 12, 2019
  • “Poland has chosen its place among the free and independent nations of the world and as a loyal ally and strategic partner of the United States” [said] President Donald J. Trump.
  • This year, the United States and Poland are celebrating 100 years of diplomatic relations. Poland is a vital NATO Ally and defense partner of the United States.
  • The United States and Poland have made great progress on Poland’s entry into the Visa Waiver Program. Today, the United States and Poland signed a Preventing and Combatting Serious Crimes Agreement—a necessary precursor for Poland to join the Visa Waiver Program.


  1. Donald Wood, “Getting a Passport Will Now Take Longer”, Travel Pulse, June 14, 2019
  • According to The Washington Post, the agency said it would now take between six and eight weeks to successfully process a passport application, a 50 percent increase from the four-to-six wait time experienced before May 31.
  • State Department officials said it offers an expedited processing service for an additional $60, which speeds up the arrival time of passports to between two and three weeks. While officials declined to comment on the long wait times when asked by The Post, the State Department did indicate short-staffing was to blame.




  1. Venezuelans flock to Peru before new entry requirements”, Lompoc Record, June 13, 2019
  • Venezuelan citizens were rushing to enter Peru Thursday less than two days before it imposes new entry requirements on migrants fleeing the crisis-wracked South American nation.
  • Gen. Raul Alfaro, the police chief for the Tumbes region, said 4,000 Venezuelans entered Peru's northern border on Wednesday, doubling the normal rate of daily entries.
  • Starting Saturday, Peru will demand passports and visas from Venezuelan migrants, who had previously been allowed to enter the country by presenting their national ID cards. The new requirements are forcing thousands of impoverished Venezuelans who have no passports to make a desperate dash for Peru's northern border, which is more than 1,300 miles (2,090 kilometers) away from their home country.


  1. Sampson Nanton, “Visas for Venezuelans”, Trinidad & Tobago Guardian, June 14, 2019
  • Na­tion­al Se­cu­ri­ty Min­is­ter Stu­art Young has an­nounced that from Mon­day, the Gov­ern­ment of Trinidad and To­ba­go will im­ple­ment a visa sys­tem for Venezue­lans wish­ing to come to Trinidad and To­ba­go.
  • "The visas will be is­sued by the em­bassy in Cara­cas, Venezuela, and the on­ly Venezue­lans who will be al­lowed to en­ter our le­gal ports of en­try will be those with visas," Young added.
  • The min­is­ter says the gov­ern­ment will now be able to de­ter­mine who is al­lowed to come to this coun­try via the visa pol­i­cy.






  1. Zachary Keyser, “Iran’s Guardian Council Sends Children Citizenship Bill Back to Parliament”, The Jerusalem Post, June 16, 2019
  • The Iranian Guardian Council said over the weekend that it rejected and sent a bill back to the Iranian parliament which would allow all Iranian mothers married to foreign citizens to have the ability to transfer their Iranian citizenship onto their children or spouses, according to the council's website.
  • The council is willing to pass the bill with certain amendments, such as that foreign husbands, fathers and children will have the ability to earn Iranian citizenship, but only if the request is given government approval, citing "security" issues - including the over three-million Afghani immigrants currently living in the country, some of whom are married to Iranian women.
  • The council's main idea is to allow the government to legally have discretion over who has the ability to gain Iranian citizenship, based on marriage, birth, security concerns, etc.




  1. Cambodia extends visa-free stay for Pinoy tourists”, ABS-CBN News, June 13, 2019
  • Filipino tourists can now enjoy up to 30 days of visa-free stay in Cambodia, the Philippine Embassy there said Thursday. In a Facebook post, the Philippine Embassy said Cambodia approved its request for an extended visa-free stay for holders of regular or ordinary Philippine passports.
  • Before the extension, citizens of Philippines and other member countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) were allowed up to 21 days visa-free stay.




  1. Keoni Everington, “Taiwan set to extend visa-free program for Philippines, Thailand, Brunei, Russia”, Taiwan News, June 11, 2019
  • Taiwan is poised to extend the visa-free program for passport holders from the Philippines, Thailand, Brunei, and Russia. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) on Monday (June 10) announced that a cross-ministerial meeting decided to extend the visa-free program for citizens of the Philippines, Thailand, Brunei, and Russia, but formal approval of the results by the Cabinet is still pending.
  • The findings of the meeting will be submitted to the Cabinet for approval and will be published after receiving the Cabinet's permission. Chang told CNA that the position of the Cabinet is to extend visa-free treatment for stays of 14 days to citizens of the Philippines, Thailand, Brunei, and Russia for another year.


United Arab Emirates


  1. Emadeldin Khalil, “Emiratis can renew passports online while abroad”, Gulf Today, June 16, 2019
  • The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, has on Sunday announced through its official account on Twitter, that the UAE nationals while abroad can apply for a passport renewal or emergency passport, if the passport is lost online via “ , or contact the call centre at 80044444 without the need to visit the embassy.
  • The ministry called on citizens abroad to access the Ministry’s website to identify smart services and the easy procedures.






  1. Russia Begins Handing Out Passports To Ukrainians From Conflict Zone”, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, June 14, 2019
  • Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree to simplify the process for Ukrainian citizens in the eastern Luhansk and Donetsk regions to get Russian citizenship just days after Volodomyr Zelenskiy won the country's presidential runoff on April 21. The move was slammed in Ukraine and abroad as an attempt to undermine Zelenskiy.
  • According to Russian state media, more than 60 Ukrainians from Donetsk and Luhansk were reportedly handed Russian passports at a ceremony in Russia's Rostov region on June 14.
  • The Ukrainian Foreign Ministry said the Russian move won't "have any legal consequences and won't be recognized by the Ukrainian side and the world," a statement quoted by Ukrainian media said. Ukraine has threatened to revoke the citizenship of those who accept Russian passports through the program.
  • Earlier this week, the European Union threatened that it would not recognize Russian passports obtained through what it denounced as an illegal method.




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