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Court ruling could expedite issuance of biometric IDs for Turkish Cypriots

Court ruling could expedite issuance of biometric IDs for Turkish Cypriots

There is good news for some Turkish Cypriots who have for many years been denied an ID card or biometric passport issued by the Republic of Cyprus. A recent court ruling signals the possibility of expedient procurement of the digital ID documents going forward.

Cyprus Mail reports that this is possible after an administrative court ruled recently that delays in responding to the citizenship requests of the plaintiffs in the case are due to administrative negligence on the part of the Cypriot government.

The ruling, the report notes, is the second on the matter in less than a year after the one on June 3, last year, in which the court considered claims of an uncertain political situation as not tenable enough for the government to delay its response to such requests.

Granting the citizenship requests will allow the plaintiffs the possibility of easily securing the Republic of Cyprus national ID card or passport. Cyprus launched biometric national ID cards in line with EU requirements in 2020.

Defence lawyer for the two plaintiffs, Murat Metin Hakki, was quoted by Cyprus Mail as saying there are an estimated 10,000 children born from mixed marriages and who have not been able to secure the legal ID documents due to their halt in issuance.

According to the lawyer, the inaction of the Cypriot authorities with regards to issuing the legal papers to the Turkish Cypriot applicants is making life quite difficult for them and their children may in the future not be able to enjoy the opportunity of studying in other European countries if they wish to.

The lawyer also gave figures of Turkish Cypriot applications for citizenship, saying there were an estimated 24 percent applications submitted between 2004 and 2007; six percent between 2008 and 2011; 32 percent between 2012 and 2015, and 16 percent from 2016 and beyond, writes Cyprus Mail.

The report notes that at some point in the past, 2,000 applications for citizenship were granted by the Cypriot government, but the process was eventually halted as a result of politics, penalizing even applicants who were eligible to earn the status.

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