All EU countries to grant 5-year renewable residence permits to asylum seekers

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BRUSSELS, BELGIUM - MARCH 02: European Union flags are seen in front of the Berlaymont Building (European Commission's center) in Brussels, Belgium on March 02, 2017. AFP

The European Parliament’s Civil Liberties Committee approved a regulation on Thursday that grants residence permits for all beneficiaries of international protection in the EU for five years, renewable for additional five-year periods.

According to a press release from the European Parliament on Thursday, members of the European Parliament (MEPs) backed the new regulation on the recognition of refugees, asylum seekers and other people in need of protection.

The legislation, which was passed by 40 votes in favor to 13 against and with four abstentions, will be directly applicable to all EU member states to harmonize criteria and standards for the recognition of refugee status.

The aim of the regulation is to ensure that asylum seekers face equal treatment and get the same form of protection regardless of the member state in which they file their request. This should help reduce ‘asylum-shopping.’ MEPs also want to improve integration in the societies hosting refugees,” the press release said.

The provision also seeks adequate protection for unaccompanied children like any other children in the country in which they are located.

The new Qualification Regulation is part of a wider review of the Common European Asylum System put forward last year by the European Commission. The reform of the Dublin Regulation, which determines the member state responsible to deal with an asylum application, is the centerpiece of the system’s revamp.

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