Tuesday, 19 October 2004

Ceisteanna (356, 357)

Aengus Ó Snodaigh

Ceist:

497 Aengus Ó Snodaigh asked the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform the number of cases of the 32 involving deported parents of Irish children in which his Department has facilitated the removal of children with their parents, for example by obtaining visas for the children or seeking passports in the names of the children. [25554/04]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform)

My Department and the Garda National Immigration Bureau affords every necessary assistance to parents wishing to take their Irish born children with them whether the parents are being deported or are returning home voluntarily. In addition to being Irish citizens, the Irish born children of the 32 non-national parents deported to date all share the nationality of their parents. As such, these children were entitled to enter the countries their parents were returned to as citizens of those countries. The type of travel documents required by these children to enable them to return to their parents' countries depends on the national requirements of each country of return. Some countries will accept an EU travel letter national without a national travel document. Others will issuelaissez passers to children alongside their parents’ travel documents, while yet others will insist on the children having their own passports.

Given the different practices operated by the various countries of return, the Garda National Immigration Bureau, which has responsibility for documenting returnees, deals with each situation on a case-by-case basis and does not maintain an overall statistical count of such cases. However, in the few instances where the children travelled on Irish passports, the Garda bureau assisted in obtaining passports for some and any necessary entry visas from the relevant embassies.

Aengus Ó Snodaigh

Ceist:

498 Aengus Ó Snodaigh asked the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform the number of the successful applicants who had solicitors acting on their behalf in view of the 45 decisions to grant temporary leave to remain to the parent or parents of Irish citizen children. [25555/04]

Amharc ar fhreagra

The reasons for granting temporary leave to remain, as opposed to the making of a deportation order, are varied having regard to the 11 factors which I, as Minister, must consider under section 3(6) of the Immigration Act 1999, as amended, in reaching a decision in any particular case. It would therefore be wrong to assume that the decision to grant temporary leave to remain in the 45 cases referred to by the Deputy were based solely on existence of an Irish born child. Where legal advisers are engaged by persons served with notices of intention to deport, it is usually for the purpose of making representations on behalf of their clients for leave to remain in the State. One of the 11 factors to be considered by the Minister in determining whether or not to make a deportation order is any representation made by or on behalf of the person. A final decision on the matter is not dependent on whether, in fact, such representations have been made. Thus, statistics are not maintained as to the number of cases where representations for leave to remain have been made, whether made by legal advisers or not.

I indicated in my reply to the Deputy's Question No. 342 of 12 October 2004 that I would send him details of the nationalities of the parents of Irish born children where deportation orders were made and temporary leave to remain was granted. I take the opportunity afforded by this question to provide these statistics directly to the House.

Country of Origin

Number of Deportation Orders Signed

Number of Temporary Leaves to Remain Granted

Nigeria

240

21

Romania

54

6

China

19

Russia

1

1

Armenia

2

Ukraine

9

2

Ghana

16

Cameroon

8

Cyprus

1

Turkey

3

South Africa

1

1

Uganda

2

Kosovo

6

India

4

Kenya

9

2

Israel

2

Belarus

2

Moldova

2

1

Algeria

1

Slovakia

1

Pakistan

1

USA

1

New Zealand

1

Sierra Leone

1

Malaysia

2

Thailand

2

Mongolia

2

Total

382

45

My earlier reply stated that the number of deportation orders signed in respect of parents of Irish born children was 384. The correct figure is 382 as shown in the breakdown above. This was due to a compilation error which is regretted.