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Wednesday, 01 December 2010

Residence rights for refugees and people under international protection

Refugees and other beneficiaries of international protection could acquire long-term resident status in the EU, under new rules approved by the Civil Liberties Committee on Monday. These rules, to be endorsed by Parliament as a whole in December, would give refugees the same rights as other third-country nationals with long-term resident status, including free movement within the EU and, under certain conditions, equal treatment with EU citizens in a wide range of economic and social areas. This legislation, which amends an EU directive of 2003, will bring "direct benefit to all the beneficiaries of international protection who have been residing legally on the territory of the EU for more than 5 years, but currently have no entitlement to long-term resident status. It will bring an end to their differential treatment vis-à-vis other third country nationals, and will give them greater certainty about their situation in the EU", said Civil Liberties Committee rapporteur Claude Moraes (S&D, UK), who is steering the legislation through Parliament.

Source: European Parliament