Ministers Flanagan and Stanton welcome Syrian refugee families to Ireland


27 December 2018


The Minister for Justice and Equality, Charlie Flanagan TD, and his colleague, the Minister of State for Equality, Immigration and Integration, David Stanton TD, are pleased to welcome 22 Syrian families to Ireland today under the Irish Refugee Protection Programme (IRPP).


Welcoming the arrival of the families, Minister Flanagan said: “During this festive period, as we enjoy spending time with our own families, it is important to remember that many families across the world have been forcibly displaced from their homes by war and protracted crises.  Under our national resettlement programme, working closely with the UNHCR, we prioritise those who are most vulnerable and provide a durable solution to enable them to rebuild their lives in safety and security, here in Ireland.  The families that have arrived today are very welcome.  They will now have time to rest and recover and to focus on their future in their new home.”


The families have been living in the UNHCR refugee camp in Lebanon since fleeing the conflict in Syria.  105 people have been resettled to Ireland today including 58 children.  They join 97 persons resettled to Ireland from Lebanon last week, bringing the total number of people resettled this month to 202 including 109 children.  The families who have arrived today will initially reside in the Emergency Reception and Orientation Centre in Ballaghaderreen while they await permanent housing in communities across the country.


Highlighting the importance of community support for refugees, Minister Stanton said: “The people of Ballaghaderreen have come together to create a welcoming and supportive environment for refugee families who have experienced great trauma.  It is a model that I would like to see embraced in communities right across the country.  Integration is a powerful tool in assimilating our new communities and assisting them to engage in all areas of Irish society, from schools, to sports, to employment.  I know that the families who have arrived today will be warmly welcomed by the local community and we will ensure that they are provided with all of the necessary supports.”


Further refugee families will be resettled to Ireland under the IRPP in 2019.


The Ministers wish to thank the officials from the IRPP Division of their Department, who are working over the Christmas period to ensure that the families receive all appropriate care and attention.




Note for Editors:


The Irish Refugee Protection Programme (IRPP) was established in September 2015 as part of the State’s humanitarian response to the migration crisis in Southern Europe.  The State agreed to accept up to 4,000 asylum seekers and refugees overall into Ireland at the earliest time possible.


Since 2015, 2,159 asylum seekers and refugees have been admitted to Ireland under the Irish Refugee Protection Programme, by way of relocation from Greece or resettlement from Lebanon under the UNHCR-led programme.  This includes those resettled from Lebanon this month. 


The 97 refugees resettled to Ireland last week will initially reside in the centres in Mosney and Clonea Strand while they await permanent housing in communities across the country.








17th December

44 persons (of which 21 children)

9 persons (of which 4 children)


53 persons

25 children

18th December

43 persons (of which 26 children)

1 person


44 persons

26 children

27th December



105 persons (of which 58 children)

105 persons

58 children