NATION

Slow Visa Process Affects Iraq Rotation

The slow visa process in Iraq is affecting the rotation of Fijian soldiers in peacekeeping duties. This was revealed by the Minister for Immigration, National Security and Defence, Timoci Natuva,
09 Aug 2015 09:40
Slow Visa Process Affects Iraq Rotation

The slow visa process in Iraq is affecting the rotation of Fijian soldiers in peacekeeping duties.

This was revealed by the Minister for Immigration, National Security and Defence, Timoci Natuva, following his recent visit to Fiji’s peacekeeping areas in the Middle East.

He did not visit Fijian soldiers in Iraq because his visa was not processed in time.

“The Ministy of Foreign Affairs had made my visa application three months before the trip and when I started the visit, my visa application was still not processed,” Mr Natuva said.

He said he was informed earlier that he did not need to have a visa because he was travelling on a diplomatic passport, but he applied for visa to make sure he was allowed into Iraq with his ministerial delegation.

He said the slow process of visa in Iraq had also affected the rotation of Fijian soldiers.

“Soldiers who should have left Fiji are still here because they have no visas. As of today, we are still waiting for their visas that had been applied eighteen months ago.”

The return of soldiers in Iraq who had completed their tour had been delayed because the replacement troops were still in Fiji.

He said attempts had been made to resolve the issue with the Iraqi government.

Feedback:  maikab@fijisun.com.fj

 

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