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May 12, 2016

UNHCR says over 200 Persons Have Applied to the Program

Katy Tobin

Information we received suggested that a couple hundred people have applied for the process. Today, we asked Tobin what the numbers look like and what follows next. Here’s how she explained it.

 

Marleni Cuellar

“Since the initiation of the process, how many applications have been submitted and the process initiated?”

 

Katy Tobin, Senior Protection Associate, UNHCR

“Well, I can tell you the number of cases reviewed and decisions made, I believe ninety two cases. I am not sure exactly how many cases have been submitted. Of course, it changes as it is submitted week to week. But the committee has made decisions of up to almost a hundred cases.”

 

Marleni Cuellar

“And we were told that there were a couple hundred applicants that have applied for the process?”

 

Katy Tobin

“That is correct. I am not able to give you an official number but there is quite a backlog. There have been many people who have registered since the activation of the committee last year.”

 

Marleni Cuellar

“The ninety two applications that have been reviewed, what is the status of those applications at this point? Are they now at the desk of the minister of immigration?”

 

Katy Tobin

“Yes, that’s correct, yes.”

 

Marleni Cuellar

“So, they are pending approval at this point?”

 

Katy Tobin

“Yes. They are the final stage, that’s right.”

 

Marleni Cuellar

“What happens once a person currently living in Belize is given refugee status?”

 

Katy Tobin

“I believe that the details are still being worked out about what status refugees will be given in Belize. It tends to lean towards permanent residency and then after a number of years, citizenship. That is certainly what we saw with the refugees who were recognized in the nineties.”

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Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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