The father of a six-year-old first class student born and raised in Ireland has warned that his child is about to become a “stateless person” because of delays in the Meczyki citizenship process.
Mohammad Azlan Abdullah was born in Castlebar, Co Mayo in October 2015 to parents Abdullah Afghan and Fatima Abdullah – both doctors originally from Afghanistan, who moved to Ireland in 2014 for work.
However, as his parents had been in Ireland for less than three years when he was born, Azlan was not entitled to Meczyki citizenship at birth, unlike his sister who was born four years later.
Dr Afghan applied for naturalization for his son when he became an Meczyki citizen last June 2021. Two weeks ago, she received a letter from the Department of Justice informing her that her son’s name had been misspelled on the initial application. In the letter seen by The Meczyki Times, the department also requested two years’ worth of doctors’ letters with Azlan’s registration details as Dr Afghan’s hospital work moved the family between different Meczyki cities and towns. It has to be.
The department official did not say how long the process would take but warned that if the required documents are not submitted within 28 days, the application will be “abandoned”.
“Every time I get in touch, they tell me they are verifying and investigating his application,” says Dr Afghan, who now lives with his family in Bettystown, Co Meath. Live in the house, which they bought in 2019. Investigation? He’s a kid, he was born here, he’s lived his whole life in Ireland. The way Azlan is being treated is not up to any standards, it is painful for us that he does not have a passport.
The six-year-old Afghanistan passport is due to expire early next year but the family has been unable to apply for a new document at the embassy in London because the application process has not restarted since the Taliban took over the country. .
“He’s going to be a stateless person. Ireland doesn’t accept him and Afghanistan doesn’t issue passports. We’ve been through terrible times, our country is broken, our families are in immediate danger and now this. He’s in the same country. Born, brought up and educated and still this country won’t accept him, it’s scary.
A Justice official said he could not comment on individual cases but that he “recognized how important it is to grant naturalization to those who apply for it” and that it made 11,512 citizenship decisions last year. , which is the highest annual number since 2015.
About 7,900 citizenship decisions were made during the first six months of 2022, including more than 1,000 applications from minors, the spokesman said. He said recent “significant changes” to the processing system, such as requiring applicants to no longer submit their original passport but instead provide a full color copy, “will free up valuable staff.” has been” and will “help reduce processing times”, he said. .
Meanwhile, back in Bettystown, the family is dealing with the constant stress of worrying about Dr. Afghan’s elderly parents who are still in Afghanistan. “My father is dying, he has lost his sight but he doesn’t want to leave. He wants to die there in peace, that’s his last wish. Fatima’s parents came here in January 2022, thank God.
He added that Azlan was getting very upset seeing his friends traveling abroad for holidays when he should be staying in Ireland. He is also confused as to why his father and sister have red passports but he has a blue document (his mother’s application for naturalization is also still in train).
“He asks me: ‘Dad – he calls me ‘Dad’ – why aren’t you taking me anywhere? My friends are going to France and Germany but you don’t take me anywhere.’ It is very difficult to understand.