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Sweden to Apply Stricter Conditions for Family Immigration & Limit Residence Permits for Humanitarian Reasons

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Sweden will tighten requirements for family immigration in certain cases and limit the possibility of granting residence permits for humanitarian purposes as part of efforts to reduce the number of asylum seekers.

The new changes confirmed by the Ministry of Justice will become effective from December 1 this year and come following a bill approved by the government of Sweden, SchengenVisaInfo.com reports.

The bill consists of the following changes to the Aliens Act (2005:716):

  • The age limit for denying a residence permit due to affiliation will be increased from 18 to 21 years
  • Possibilities for exemptions from the support requirement, in case of relative immigration, when the dependent person is alternative protection, are also limited
  • Provisions on residence permits due to distressing circumstances should be removed, and children should instead be granted residence permits due to particular circumstances, even if they do not have the same seriousness and weight as adults

Considering the new changes an important part of the paradigm shift carried out within the Swedish migration policy, the Migration Minister Maria, Malmer Stenergard, said that the country is facing significant challenges with a growing exclusion, to which the immigration and lack of integration have also contributed.

The purpose of the proposals is, among other things, to reduce the number of asylum seekers who apply to Sweden and create better conditions for a good reception and a functioning integration.Migration Minister Maria Malmer Stenergard

These are not the only changes that authorities in Sweden have introduced recently. Earlier this month, Stockholm announced that the process of acquiring citizenship in this country would be more difficult.

The Swedish government introduced a decision to overhaul the system of acquiring citizenship, presenting an investigation into the ways it can most efficiently apply tighter rules.

Swedish citizenship marks membership in Swedish society and has a very high value, both legally and symbolically.Migration Minister Maria Malmer Stenergard

Last month, the migration minister said that the country wants to fight the phenomenon of the shadow society by introducing the obligation for public institutions’ employees to notify the police of the presence of illegal immigrants.

Stenergard stressed that the health service may be excluded from such obligation to report illegal immigrants, stressing that it is still unclear whether the school will also be exempted.

However, such a proposal sparked controversies in Sweden after the denunciation was opposed by social services representatives among other professors and librarians, stressing that they would lose trust.

Other proposals made last month included strengthening controls on persons already residing in Sweden and the extension of biometrics, such as facial recognition or fingerprinting by the Swedish Migration Authority.

Source : Schengenvisainfo

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