Minister Flanagan congratulates 2,400 new Irish citizens

  • Three citizenship ceremonies to be held today in the Convention Centre Killarney
  • New citizens originate from over 90 countries, including 309 people from the UK

29 April 2019

The Minister for Justice and Equality, Charlie Flanagan TD, will today (Monday) congratulate 2,400 new Irish citizens across three citizenship ceremonies to be held in the Convention Centre Killarney, Co Kerry. The Presiding Officers on the day will be Retired High Court Judge Bryan McMahon and Retired District Court Judge Paddy McMahon. Those granted citizenship at today’s ceremonies originate from over 90 countries.

Addressing the new citizens, Minister Flanagan will say:

“Today, you will take an oath of fidelity to our nation and loyalty to our State. You will do so in the knowledge that this relatively young State – still less than a century since our independence was gained – is a place of culture where traditions are cherished and history is ever-present. And be sure, too, that this State is a place of diversity and openness."

The Minister will highlight the Government’s Migrant Integration Strategy which is aimed not just at all new comers to our shores, but also at our own citizens with the primary objective of ensuring that barriers to full participation in Irish society are identified and addressed and that the basic values of Irish society are respected by all.

The Minister will add:

“The people of Ireland are committed to respecting all traditions on this island equally. Our Migrant Integration Strategy is about building a society where we all live in harmony while at the same time respecting our cultural or religious differences. We recognise that developing a greater understanding of our shared history, in all its diversity, is essential to developing greater understanding and building a shared future… at the heart of the European family of nations."

Citizenship ceremonies were first introduced in 2011 in order to mark the occasion of the granting of citizenship in a dignified and solemn manner. Today’s ceremonies bring the total number of ceremonies held since then to 141 where people from over 180 countries will have received their certificates of naturalisation. Including minors, over 122,000 people will have received Irish citizenship since 2011 following the ceremonies.

Non-EEA nationals aged under 16 are not currently issued with Irish Residence Permits. To ensure that minors with visa required nationality can re-enter the State without difficulty, for example on family holidays, their parents or guardians in Ireland can apply for a visa for them. Re-entry visas for minors will be issued without charge.

The ceremonies continue to see significant numbers of those originating from the United Kingdom granted Irish citizenship. At today’s ceremonies, 309 people from the UK will receive their certificates of Irish citizenship.

Among the rights gained by those receiving citizenship today is voting rights equal to those of all Irish citizens, including the right to vote in referendums and Presidential elections (voting in which is restricted to Irish citizens). Each of the three ceremonies today will also be addressed by Ms Justice Tara Burns, Chairperson of the Referendum Commission, who will encourage the new citizens to register to vote ahead of the upcoming referendum on divorce.

Notes for editors

Details of future ceremonies and the process for applying for citizenship are placed on www.inis.gov.ie

This will be the second year when large scale citizenship ceremonies have been held outside of Dublin. The Gleneagles Hotel Convention Centre, Killarney is the new location for large citizenship ceremonies going forward.

The top ten countries of origin for those receiving citizenship today were as follows:

Nationality Total
Poland 406
United Kingdom 309
Romania 218
India 186
Nigeria 99
Latvia 98
Philippines 86
Brazil 72
United States Of America 68
China (including Hong Kong) 61
Charlie Flanagan TD

Charlie Flanagan TD

Charlie Flanagan TD is Minister for Justice and Equality.

 

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Published:29 April 2019

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