Cairo: Kuwait has issued around 3,000 entry visas for children of expatriates in 20 days since the reissuance was allowed after a month-long halt, a Kuwaiti newspaper has reported.
Kuwaiti authorities earlier this year halted family visit visas pending setting strict rules to ensure visitors will leave upon the expiry of their visas.
The system was partially revived last month when a decision was issued allowing reissuance of dependency visas for children aged five years and below.
The majority of foreign children for which the visas have since been issued are babies who were born during the summer holiday in their home countries when different types of entry visas were halted, according to Al Rai paper.
“The decision to issue visas for children, which was made on November 20 on humanitarian grounds, is aimed to ensure reunion of children with their fathers and mothers who are working in the country,” said security sources.
“During the first 20 days, the Residency Affairs Sector has issued around 3,000 dependency issues for children from several nationalities, mostly Arabs,” the sources added.
Authorities continue to receive applications for allowing entry of children up to five years old.
Applicant parents must have valid residency permits and meet conditions set by the Residency Affairs Sector in terms of salary and both parents must be present in Kuwait, the sources said.
Suspending the issuance of family visas was part of efforts by the Kuwaiti Interior Ministry to devise specific rules aimed to strike a balance between readjusting the demographic make-up and safeguarding foreign residents’ right to family union.
Around 20,000 expatriates came to the country on visit visas and did not leave after the end of their visit durations, according to Kuwaiti media.
Foreigners make up nearly 3.4 million of Kuwait’s overall population of 4.6 million.