Dáil Éireann - Volume 622 - 27 June, 2006

Written Answers. - Citizenship Applications.

Mr. Neville asked the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform when an application for naturalisation will be completed for a person (details supplied) in County Limerick. [24392/06]

  Mr. McDowell: An application for a certificate of naturalisation from the person referred to in the Deputy’s question was received in the Citizenship Section of my Department on 21 February 2006. Applications received in the first half of 2004 are currently being processed and there are approximately 7,500 applications awaiting processing before that of the person in question. It is likely that processing of the application of the person in question will commence in the first half of 2008. If the person concerned wishes to travel outside of the State prior to her application for naturalisation being finalised, it is suggested that she contact the Embassy/ Consulate of the country or countries to which she intends to travel for information in relation to entry requirements to those jurisdictions. She will also be required to apply, in advance of her departure from the State, for a re-entry visa to the Visa Office at 13/14 Burgh Quay, Dublin 2.

Mr. Lowry asked the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform when a response will issue to correspondence (details supplied); and if [1030] he will make a statement on the matter. [24421/06]

  Mr. McDowell: A stateless person, as defined under the 1954 UN Convention of the Status of Stateless Persons and the 1961 UN Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness, and who has legal residency in the State, can make an application to the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service of my Department for a Travel Document. Travel Documents issued by the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service of my Department are not a substitute for passports from a person’s country of nationality. As the person concerned has an entitlement to their national passport, he or she cannot be considered as stateless and therefore are not eligible to apply for a Travel Document as a stateless person. However, it is the policy of the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service of my Department to assist persons who have legal residency in the State, where possible, to travel abroad to obtain a national passport. The person in question can make an application in writing for a temporary Travel Document which will be considered on an exceptional basis to facilitate his or her travel abroad to obtain a national passport.