The authorities has prolonged its visa route from Hong Kong to permit younger folks born after the handover to China to come back to the UK.
Home Secretary Priti Patel stated these born after 1997 who’re over 18 and with not less than one guardian holding British National (Overseas) standing will be capable of get a visa to reside, work and examine right here.
She stated: “I’m delighted that thanks to the scheme we introduced, thousands of Hong Kongers have already made the UK their home and integrated into communities across the country.
“The additional adjustments I’ve introduced, which can come into impact this autumn, will proceed to ship on our historic and ethical dedication to the folks of Hong Kong.”
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The visa route for BN(O)s and their dependents was launched final 12 months after the imposition of a controversial new safety legislation in Hong Kong by China, which has since been described by the UK as means to “crush dissent” towards Beijing.
The authorities stated the legislation, geared toward clamping down on a pro-democracy motion and resulting in violent clashes between protesters and the police, was a breach of the Sino-British Joint Declaration – the deal that noticed Hong Kong go again to China from Britain in 1997.
Just below three million folks have been eligible for the brand new route from January 2021, and up to now 123,400 have utilized, with 113,742 visas granted.
The Home Office stated this new extension, which might additionally permit for his or her dependents to hitch them, would let an additional 11,700 folks to come back to the UK in the event that they select.
As with different visas, after 5 years they will be capable of apply for settled standing, and after an additional 12 months, they may be capable of apply for British citizenship.
Ms Patel added: “I know the British people will continue to welcome more Hong Kongers and help them rebuild their lives free from fear.”
The BNO passport was issued to Hong Kongers when it was a British colony and permits them to go to the nation for an prolonged interval, however doesn’t supply them citizenship rights.
After the visa scheme was introduced, Beijing stated it will now not recognise the BN(O) passport, however whereas vital, it was a largely symbolic transfer that ought to not cease Hong Kongers from leaving.