There seems to be confusion in Kusadasi and other cities over the introduction of the new system of Turkish residence application and renewal for foreign citizens.
2 clients who attended Kusadasi Police Station, one for a 1st time application and one for a renewal were turned away and told that the officials there had suspended the issuing and renewal of residence until they had clearer guidelines from central government on how to implement the new rules.
The renewal client’s residence expires in 2 days and, although she has no place of residence outside Turkey, she reported that they suggested to her that she leave the country until such time as they were able to start renewals again to avoid overstaying!
The Foreign Citizens Advice Centre spoke to the police station who confirmed the suspension. The police spokesman said that “they expected that within 1-2 weeks all would become clear and that they would be able to explain the exact procedures that need to be followed including where the applications and renewals would be received”.
The FCAC then contacted both the British and Irish Consulates but, despite repeated attempts, their telephones were not answered. Their respective websites also had nothing to report on the matter.
The FCAC contacted the FCO in London who oversee foreign diplomatic missions. They said they would speak to their colleagues in Istanbul and get back to them. As yet they have not done so.
The British Embassy Facebook page only says that the new Migration Directorate will take over responsibility for issuing residence but does not give details of where to go. They do say that they will attend a meeting at which the Migration Directorate will ‘speak to the international community’ regarding the new guidelines on April 16th.
On the Migration Directorate website they claim to have appointed managers and Deputy directors in all 81 provinces but did not give the names of any or the contact details of a single province that has an office open for enquiries. They further claim to be providing a total of 3005 staff to manage the Directorate’s responsibilities countrywide.
The FCAC was only able to obtain the main Directorate’s telephone number and their e-mail address. The telephone number rang but was not answered and did not have the facility to leave a message. The FCAC expects to speak to representatives of the Directorate in due course and will report their findings on this page and other locations as and when they have anything of substance to update you with.
According to the new law that should have come into force on April 11th new applications for residence should be made at the Turkish Consulate in the home country of the applicant except where it is unreasonable to expect an applicant who is already in Turkey to return to their home country.
The FCAC contacted both the Irish and UK Turkish Consulates who said that they were not able to confirm that they were in a position to issue residence and would ‘look into it’ and suggested we call back again later.
Another change in the law is that residence renewals should be processed by the Migration Directorate staff under the umbrella of the office of the local governor. As yet they have not been able to confirm that they are in a position to process applications and the FCAC will continue to follow that line of enquiry.
It is also worrying at this time of year for foreign citizens with valid Turkish residence returning for the summer from extended stays in their home country.
The new law says that ‘applications for renewal of residence MAY be refused if the residence holder stays abroad for more than 120 days’. The FCAC at this stage have been unable to get a clear understanding of what ‘MAY’ means exactly.
For those foreign citizens with Turkish residence about to expire we have been advised by Kusadasi police station that they can, at any time before 10 days after the residence has expired, take a day trip to Samos and return on a tourist visa which at least will cover them for 90 days. It is fully expected that within that period all those intending to stay on past the 90 days will have a clear understanding of how to re-obtain residence according to their requirements.
It is disappointing that the authorities seem ill-prepared for the implementation of the new laws when you consider that the full details of the law were published over a year ago.
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