Irish passport applications soar as Brexit approaches

Emma DeSouza's husband Jake was denied a visa because her request was made as an Irish national

Emma DeSouza’s husband Jake was denied a visa because her request was made as an Irish national

Among those entitled to apply for an Irish passport, there are people born to Irish parents or grandparents.

The number of British residents applying for Irish passports has nearly doubled since the Brexit referendum, new figures show.

Brexit will have a significant impact on the rights of United Kingdom citizens in relation to Europe.

The Department of Foreign Affairs has said reports that over 15,000 Irish passport applications from British residents were refused past year are wrong.

Worldwide, the number of applications for Irish passports received from outside the Republic jumped from 190,905 in 2016 to 227,223 previous year, according to figures released to Social Democrat TD Catherine Murphy.

He added: "At least 10 per cent of the UK's population, not including Northern Ireland, are estimated to qualify for an Irish passport and in light of Brexit".

A total of 46,229 applications were made to the embassy in 2015, which was "consistent with the annual average up to then", according to Richmond.

Fine Gael Senator Neale Richmond said the Irish Embassy in London predicts that 2018 will be the busiest year so far for passport applications.

This surge comes as Caroline Nokes, the UK's immigration minister, told Parliament that the prospects of Britons being delayed while traveling in Europe after Brexit is "not unrealistic".

In 2017, the number reached 163,026, and partial data from 2018 lead to think the trend will continue this year as well, with 91,860 applications being made between January and May.

Addressing the House of Commons Home Affairs Committee, she said: "Of course it's feasible that there could be delays for people traveling through European Union airports".

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