9,000 'illegal' residents to leave Qatar in amnesty

Government had introduced three-month amnesty for illegal workers to leave

The Doha skyline. (Getty Images for ANOC)

The Doha skyline. (Getty Images for ANOC)

An estimated 9,000 people living and working illegally in Qatar are expected to leave the country before December 1, AFP reported.

A senior immigration official has reportedly told the newswire that the Qatari government has imposed a three-month amnesty for “undocumented” residents, enabling residents without visas to leave the country without legal consequences.

The amnesty runs until December 1 and is expected to see thousands of people exit the Gulf state, the official reportedly said.

Qatar has held three such previous amnesties, the most recent of which was in 2004, AFP said.

Most of those expected to leave during this year’s amnesty come from Bangladesh, India and Nepal.

It comes shortly before Qatar introduces new ‘kafala’ sponsorship legislation expected to make it easier for expats to obtain residency visas, and move jobs without their employer’s permission.

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