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Over 10,700 illegal expats apply for UAE amnesty in first week

Over 10,700 illegal expats apply for UAE amnesty in first week

The three-month amnesty period allows illegal UAE residents to correct their status without paying fines

More than 10,700 people have applied to avail amnesty services in the UAE since the launch of the initiative on August 1, according to official figures.

The three-month amnesty period allows illegal UAE residents to correct their status without paying fines.

A total of 10,797 people have already approached specialist immigration centres in Dubai, the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs (GDRFA) in Dubai revealed on Wednesday.

Nine reception centres have been established to facilitate visa violators in the Shahama area in Abu Dhabi, the Al Aweer area in Dubai, and in Sharjah, Ajman, Fujairah, Ras Al Khaimah, Umm Al Quwain, Al Ain and Dhafra. They are open from 8am to 8pm, Sunday to Thursday.

Brigadier Khalaf Al Ghaith from the GDRFA Dubai said that “the majority of offenders came to rectify their situation in order to stay in the country legally”.

The amnesty, which is the country’s first in five years, has particularly lenient terms for those seeking to work in the country legally and will last until October 31.

For the first time, visa violators and absconders will be able to move to another employer or a new jobseekers visa category without having to leave the country.

People in these categories that choose to leave the UAE during the period will also be exempt from fines and fees and won’t receive a no entry stamp.

In addition, those that entered the UAE illegally have the opportunity to leave the country and only receive a two-year ban before they can return.

It has been more than five years since the last UAE amnesty in 2013, which saw more than 61,000 people correct their status.

Read: Over 61,000 Illegal Residents Leave UAE On Amnesty

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