Canada has announced additional facilitative measures to support those affected by the situation in Beirut, Lebanon.
Canadian citizens and permanent residents in Lebanon wishing to return to Canada may receive priority processing if they require travel documents such as a permanent resident travel document (PRTD), or a Canadian passport.
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) announced that it is also prioritizing visitor visa applications of immediate family members of Canadian citizens and permanent residents, provided they lived in a Beirut neighbourhood affected by the explosion.
Immediate family members include:
- Common law partners
- Dependent children
Parents or step-parents.
Lebanese citizens who are temporarily residing in Canada may extend their stay if they are not able to return home because of the explosion.
Canadian citizens, permanent residents in Lebanon, and Lebanese citizens in Canada will also be able to take advantage of waived fees.
The fees will be waived for issuance of any of the following:
- PRTD ($50)
- Temporary Canadian passport ($110)
- Canadian passport (various fees)
- Replacement of certificate of Canadian citizenship ($75)
- Emergency travel document (various fees)
- Extension of temporary resident status ($100)
- Renewal of a study permit ($150)
- Renewal of a work permit ($155)
Those requesting a certificate of Canadian citizenship for the first time will not have their fee waived.
Permanent residents requiring a PRTD may still be required to pay a service fee to submit their application at the Beirut Visa Application Centre.
Last month, Canada established an immigration task force in Beirut to support the delivery of consular services.
Which Beirut neighbourhoods are affected?
Immediate family members may receive priority processing provided they lived in a neighbourhood in Beirut that was affected by the explosion.
As outlined by the United Nations, the following is a list of affected neighbourhoods:
- Ain el-Mreisseh
- Beirut Central District
- Bourj Hammoud
- Jall Ed-Did
- Minet el-Hosn
- Ras Beyrouth
- Sin el-Fil
- Zoukak el-Blatt
How can Lebanese citizens apply?
Lebanese citizens must submit an application online before January 31, 2021.
In addition, they will have to submit their documents by sending an email to the dedicated email address IRCC.SituationLebanon-SituationLiban.IRCC@cic.gc.ca. Applicants are required to submit all documents that may prove their eligibility.
This includes proof that they live in an affected area, proof of their relationship with a Canadian citizen or permanent resident, as well as their family member’s proof of citizenship or proof of permanent resident status.
Individuals in Lebanon can also send their immigration questions to the same email.
Immigrating to Canada from Lebanon
Immigration from Lebanon started in 1882, and continues to this day.
There is estimated to be between 200,000 and 400,000 individuals of Lebanese origin in Canada today.
Lebanese citizens who wish to immigrate to Canada as a skilled worker, have more than 100 immigration pathways to choose from.
The most popular way to immigrate to Canada is through the Express Entry system. Canada held an Express Entry draw on Wednesday inviting 4,200 immigration candidates to apply for permanent residence.
Check if you are eligible for Canadian immigration by taking our free assessment form.
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