Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Expansion of Afghan Refugee Sponsorship Program; A Pathway to Canada

Immigration News

Nizamuddin Rezahi
Nizamuddin Rezahihttps://www.khaama.com
Nizamuddin Rezahi is a journalist and editor for Khaama Press. You may follow him @nizamrezahi on Twitter.

After the collapse of the previous regime in August 2021, the Canadian people extended their helping hands to those Afghan families and friends fleeing for their lives, and they are still ready to support more asylum seekers.  

The Canadian government and people have been extremely generous to the people of Afghanistan. Their unconditional support has continued for the people of Afghanistan over the past two decades across different domains. Even after the Taliban’s takeover, they moved thousands of vulnerable Afghan families to Canada through a so-called emergency program.

Immigration Refugee and Citizenship Canada introduced a temporary federal program dedicated to Afghan nationals less than two months ago, waiving the need for official refugee status, as long as the refugees meet the Canadian government’s criteria to be privately sponsored.

However, the demand was so high that the program reached its cap of 3,000 applications within the initial 20 or 30 minutes, leaving many sponsors frustrated, who raised funds and took full preparation to fill out an application.

“I am pleased the government opened this temporary program and hopes there will be more refugees without official refugee recognition status who are accepted, highlighting Afghans are one of the largest refugee populations in the world,” said Iris Challoner, MOSAIC’s refugee sponsorship program manager.

Meanwhile, the private sponsorship group is another scheme through which eligible Afghan families could move to Canada who already have relatives to sponsor. But the major obstacle is the legal status of Afghans who have fled to Pakistan and Iran. They need to have official recognition from those states or the United Nations Higher Commissioner for Refugees.

Currently, neither the host countries nor UNHCR provides Afghan refugees with official recognition documents so that they could apply for private sponsorship groups, leaving them in chaos and desperation.

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