People from over 130 different countries will receive Irish citizenship at ceremonies in County Kerry this week.
Around 3,500 people are getting their citizenship at the four ceremonies in Killarney today and tomorrow.
The ceremony will see the new citizens making a declaration of fidelity to the nation and loyalty to the State.
Before being handed their certificates of naturalisation, they will also swear to observe the laws of Ireland and respect its democratic values.
☘️ Our exciting Citizenship Ceremonies are taking place this year in Killarney County Kerry on Mon/Tues 🇮🇪
🎥 For friends & family around the world you can watch the event LIVE on our socials
— Department of Justice 🇮🇪 (@DeptJusticeIRL) December 4, 2022
Junior Minister at the Department of Justice James Browne told Newstalk that the new citizens will be a big benefit to the country.
“I think it is very important to be welcoming because what it does for Ireland is makes us a stronger country through that diversity,” he said.
“But also, by giving those people living here in Ireland that certainty of identity and a sense of belonging.
“What it also does for those people is give them rights and legal protections, while also of course recognising too that they have responsibilities and duties.”
☘️Today is a special day for so many people who will receive their Irish Citizenship today in County Kerry☘️ .
🔴 Event Livestream at 11.30am, 2pm, 4.30pm - 🎥 Youtube, Facebook, Twitter
— Department of Justice 🇮🇪 (@DeptJusticeIRL) December 5, 2022
He said the new citizens have made Ireland their home.
“The benefit for our State, for our country, is having all of those people having that sense of belonging,” he said.
“Then they invest into our country, become a real part of our country and we learn from them as well through the diversity of the different nationalities who become citizens of Ireland.
“That helps to build a stronger and, I think, more integrated society as well.”
People can apply for citizenship when they have lived in Ireland for four out of the last eight years.
Young adults can use their parents ‘reckonable residence’ in some cases.
Applicants must also be able to show that they are ‘of good character’ – although there is no exhaustive legal definition of what this means.
The Minister has the power to waive some of the conditions for naturalisation in certain scenarios.