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Zappone welcomes arrival of 8 young people from Greek refugee camp

The children will be received into the care of Tusla, the Child and Family Agency.

Image: Niall Carson via PA Images

MINISTER FOR CHILDREN Katherine Zappone has welcomed the arrival of eight young people from a refugee camp in Greece. 

The young people have been separated from their families and are coming here under the International Refugee Protection Programme, which is managed by the Department for Justice. 

The children will be received into the care of Tusla, the Child and Family Agency. 

Preparation for the transfer of the eight young people began in September 2019 when Tusla led a mission to Athens and the children were assessed, screened and approved for resettlement. 

Arrangements for the children were being processed and their arrival had been expected in late March. However, all refugee transport and resettlement programmes were temporarily suspended in mid-March due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the transfer could not be completed. 

“I am delighted that at last we can welcome these children, whose arrival here was postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic. I am very relieved that the young people tested negative for Covid-19 and were able to travel today,” Zappone said.

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The Minister added that Tusla has “developed a detailed and comprehensive plan to care for these young people in their new home, where they will quarantine”. 

“They will be received into Tusla care and will have a chance to adjust to the very difference circumstances in which they will now be living,” Zappone said. 

“I want to thank Tusla for the additional efforts made to ensure all public health advice is adhered to and that the young people, and those caring for them, are protected as they settle into their new homes,” she said.

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