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South Africans react to Ireland’s new visa restrictions


South Africans are reacting to Ireland’s decision to remove visa-free entry by placing visa restrictions on SA nationals.

On 8 July Ireland announced that South Africa and Botswana, had been removed from its visa abolition list.

This means the two African nations no longer enjoy visa-free entry to that country.  

IRELAND INTRODUCES VISA RESTRICTIONS FOR SOUTH AFRICA

Irish Times reports that passport holders of South Africa and Botswana will be required to obtain a visa before travelling to Ireland from 10 July, Ireland’s Minister for Justice has announced. 

Furthermore, Helen McEntee also said that transit visas will also be required if nationals of either country intend to transit through Ireland to other destinations.

Transitional arrangements will now be put in place for nationals of South Africa and Botswana.

However, these will apply only to travellers with existing arrangements to travel to the Republic of Ireland until 9 August. 

REACTIONS FROM SOUTH AFRICANS

The decision has sparked some reactions from South Africans who are not pleased with the move. South Africans have reacted with various stances.

Responses range from acceptance of the decision to firing blame at Home Affairs for the fraudulence and corruption that has continued for several years.

Parliamentary and media liaison officer Chrispin Phiri has said that South Africa is aware and is addressing concerns with the Republic of Ireland.

INTERNATIONAL PROTECTION APPLICATIONS

The decision was made due to what the Irish Department of Justice has described as “a significant number of international protection applications” being received from nationals of Botswana and South Africa.

In fact, fewer than 500 applications combined were made by individuals from South Africa and Botswana.

DEEMED SAFE COUNTRIES

The Journal states that both countries are designated as safe countries of origin for International Protection purposes and are indeed the only countries on that list that are not currently visa-required nations.

Ireland says the introduction of the visa requirement is set to bring Ireland in closer alignment with entry requirements for the Schengen Area and the United Kingdom.

VISAS FOR IRELAND

Ireland does not belong to the Schengen Area. This means that a separate visa must be obtained to enter Ireland.

South African passport holders also require visas to enter the United Kingdom.

Entry visas must be obtained by travellers before arriving in both the Schengen Area and the United Kingdom.

In addition, these visas are costly and time-consuming for applicants.

Another visa will make trips to Europe very costly for those visiting several countries in a single trip.

What do you think about this visa restriction?

Let us know by clicking on the comment tab below this article or by emailing info@thesouthafrican.com or sending a WhatsApp to 060 011 021 1. You can also follow @TheSAnews on X and The South African on Facebook for the latest news.





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