Dubai, May 19: In a heart-warming decision to reunite families that have been split by anti-Covid travel restrictions, the UAE has announced that residents with valid visas stranded outside the country can return from June 1.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation and the Federal Authority for Identity and Citizenship said they will begin the process on Monday, June 1, by allowing the return of those residency holders currently stranded outside the country who have relatives in the UAE. Residents who meet this criteria must apply for a Resident Entry Permit on smartservices.ica.gov.ae.
The ministry and the authority said the decision was taken to reunite families that have been affected by the anti-coronavirus measures taken due to the exceptional circumstances.
"The UAE is keen to facilitate the procedures for holders of UAE residency visas who are stuck outside the country and reunite them with their families who were affected by the precautionary measures taken by the country in light of the current exceptional circumstances to combat Covid-19," the federal authorities were quoted by state news agency Wam.
Hundreds of UAE residents are currently stuck abroad and are separated from their families due to the unexpected freeze on air travel imposed by many countries as precautionary measures to curb the spread of coronavirus.
The #BringBackUAEresidents hashtag was trending on Twitter on Monday as several residents and families requested the government to expedite their return to the UAE.