Twenty six beneficiaries of international protection from Somalia, Eritrea and Sudan left Malta during these past two days to start a new life in the United States and Poland.
Ten of the beneficiaries left on the 16th January and a further eleven beneficiaries left earlier this morning to be resettled to the United States under the US Refugee Admissions Program (USRAP). This afternoon, five beneficiaries left for Poland as part of that country’s pledge to assist Malta, also in the context of the EUREMA II project co-financed by the European Union under the European Refugee Fund Community Actions.
With this latest departure, the United States has resettled 1,139 persons since 2007, of which these 21 were the first for 2013. Since the start of the USRAP in 2008, the number of beneficiaries of protection resettled to the United States amounts to 1,111. On arrival, beneficiaries are assisted by NGOs in the U.S.A. to proceed to their final destinations in various states.
Poland had committed to assisting Malta at the Ministerial pledging conference organised by the European Commission in May 2011 for Member States and Associated countries to assist countries receiving large numbers of asylum seekers. Other European countries have also committed to relocate beneficiaries of international protection from Malta, in the context of the extension of the EUREMA pilot project, or on a bilateral basis. These include Bulgaria, Denmark, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Norway, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Spain, Switzerland and The Netherlands. Relocations have already been conducted with respect to most of these countries.
The Ministry for Home Affairs in collaboration with the office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Malta and the International Organization for Migration – Malta, coordinated with counterparts in the respective countries in preparation for these departures.
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