UAE extends visa amnesty scheme

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Dubai: The UAE visa amnesty, which allows visa violators to fix their status without penalties, has been extended for another month after a high number of undocumented individuals contacted the government via the various diplomatic missions in the country.

The Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship (FAIC) announced that the amnesty, which was implemented in August as a three-month program, would be extended until Dec. 1.

Those taking advantage of the amnesty are able to either apply for residency in the UAE or by leaving without paying any fines or receiving an entry ban.

But Brigadier Saeed Rakan Al Rashidi, acting director-general for Foreigners Affairs and Ports at the FAIC warned that the government would strictly impose the laws once the amnesty period was over.

A number of diplomatic missions, who previously asked the UAE government to extend the policy, welcomed the extension, UAE daily Gulf News reported.

The Bangladeshi embassy said it would help approximately 4,500 of its citizens seeking amnesty, who were still waiting for their new passports.

Other embassies who received a significant number of cases, including those of Pakistan, Philippines, Indonesia, and Sri Lanka urged citizens to take advantage of the extension.

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