Special Temporary Measures For Sudanese Nationals Extended By Canada

Canada Opens Special Immigration Pathway For Sudanese
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Temporary measures to help Sudanese nationals in Canada for another year by allowing them to continue to extend their stay or change their statuses as visitorsstudents or temporary workers free of charge have been extended.

“We are extending these temporary special measures for foreign nationals who fled Sudan with their Canadian family members, including Canadian citizens and Canadian permanent residents, until Oct. 27, 2024,” tweeted Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada on Monday.

Fighting erupted in Khartoum, Sudan’s capital city and other sites across that country, in April as two rival military factions began their battle for control of the eastern African nation.

Although both warring parties resumed negotiations to end the war last week, it has already claimed more than 9,000 lives, including more than 410 civilians, and displaced an estimated 5.6 million people since April. Another 4,500 people have been wounded.

“Canada continues to call for an end to violence in Sudan and stands with the Sudanese people as they strive for peace,” said then-Immigration Minister Sean Fraser earlier this year.

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“Many Sudanese nationals currently in Canada can’t return home due to the dangerous and volatile situation in their home country. That’s why we’re taking steps to help them extend their stay here, so they can remain with their families, continue with their studies or find work in safety.”

Under the temporary measures in place for Sudanese nationals in Canada who left after the conflict began and entered Canada before July 15 this year is the ability for them to extend their temporary resident statuses or apply for other temporary resident documents.

“We’re prioritizing the processing of complete temporary and permanent residence applications from those living in Sudan,” notes the IRCC on its website. “If you have an application in progress, you don’t need to apply again.”

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Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) is offering free open work permits that provide access to the labour market and greater flexibility for Sudanese nationals to support themselves while they are in Canada.

These measures, which took effect Apr. 30, were anticipated as the immigration minister had already alluded to them prior to putting them in effect.

Some Sudanese permanent residence applicants outside Canada might not have access to their Sudanese travel documents, so the IRCC is making a special allowance for that.

Canada Waives Passport Requirements For Sudanese Applicants

“We are therefore waiving the requirement to hold a passport or travel document to be approved for a permanent resident visa to come to Canada,” notes the IRCC.

Thousands of foreign nationals, diplomats and aid workers are stranded in Sudan. The embassies of the United Kingdom, United States, France, Germany, Italy, Greece, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states have either been closed or are closing.

It’s a step Canada has also taken.

Global Affairs Canada announced it was suspending all its operations in Sudan on Apr. 23 this year.

“After consulting with Canada’s ambassador to Sudan, the decision has been made to temporarily suspend our operations in Sudan,” noted Global Affair Canada in a statement earlier this year.

“Canadian diplomats will temporarily work from a safe location outside of the country. They will continue working with the government of Sudan, neighbouring countries, as well as with like-minded governments and the international community to coordinate the response to this crisis and to support Canadians still in the country.”

Global Affairs Canada has also put out a call for an immediate ceasefire and the start of mediation efforts supported by regional partners in Sudan.

“The Canadian embassy will resume operations in Khartoum as soon as the situation in Sudan allows us to guarantee proper service and the safety and security for our staff,” noted Global Affairs Canada.

“While operations are suspended in Khartoum, limited consular services continue to be provided. Officials in Ottawa are in regular contact with Canadians affected, providing them information and advice as the situation develops. Canadian officials in our missions in nearby countries also stand ready to help.

“These measures complement the fee waivers for passports and travel documents for Canadians and permanent residents of Canada in Sudan, and the prioritization of completed applications already in our system for temporary and permanent residence from people in Sudan for when it is safe to travel.”

Canadians in Sudan are advised to check travel.gc.ca as often as possible for updates and to sign up with the federal government’s Registration of Canadians Abroad service to receive direct updates.

Canadians In Sudan Advised To Contact Global Affairs Canada

Canadian citizens, permanent residents and family members who want to leave Sudan can contact Global Affairs Canada’s Emergency Watch and Response Centre

  • by calling +1 613-996-8885
  • by text message at +1 613-686-3658
  • via WhatsApp at +1 613-909-8881
  • via Telegram at Canada Emergency Abroad
  • by email at [email protected]

The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) has also issued a temporary halt on removals to Sudan. This measure is being taken in recognition of the increasing violence, armed conflict, civil unrest and the volatile security situation.

“Canada has a proud and longstanding tradition of providing protection to vulnerable people around the world and we are deeply concerned for the well-being of people in Sudan, including Canadians and their family members,” said Fraser.

“We are monitoring the situation closely, and are working to provide support for those seeking safety in Canada.”

In the Sudan, the Canadian immigration department has deployed additional officers to help those already on the ground support immigration-related operations.

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Colin Singer
Colin Singer is an international acclaimed Canadian immigration lawyer and founder of immigration.ca featured on Wikipedia. Colin Singer is also founding director of the Canadian Citizenship & Immigration Resource Center (CCIRC) Inc. He served as an Associate Editor of ‘Immigration Law Reporter’, the pre-eminent immigration law publication in Canada. He previously served as an executive member of the Canadian Bar Association’s Quebec and National Immigration Law Sections and is currently a member of the Canadian Chapter of the American Immigration Lawyers Association. Colin has twice appeared as an expert witness before Canada’s House of Commons Standing Committee on Citizenship and Immigration. He is frequently recognized as a recommended authority at national conferences sponsored by government and non-government organizations on matters affecting Canada’s immigration and human resource industries. Since 2009, Colin has been a Governor of the Quebec Bar Foundation a non-profit organization committed to the advancement of the profession, and became a lifetime member in 2018.