UNHCR publishes report on Statelessness in Ireland

23 May 2023

On Tuesday 23 May, United Nations Human Rights Commission in Ireland published a report “Mapping Statelessness in Ireland.” This report builds on a 2014 scoping study with updated information on legislation, policy, and practice. The report also includes recommendations for improving compliance with the 1960 and 1954 Conventions on Statelessness which Ireland has ratified.

Stateless people do not have the nationality of any country. While some people are born stateless, others become stateless for a variety of reasons. These include discrimination or deprivation of nationality by state authorities, gaps in nationality laws, conflicts between the laws of different states or the emergence of new states and changes in borders. As a result, stateless people often have difficulty accessing basic rights, such as individual documentation, education, healthcare, employment and freedom of movement.

Key findings:

  • In Ireland, there is no statelessness determination procedure, and the identification and protection of stateless persons is hampered by the absence of coordinated policy and guidance related to international protection procedures or immigration processes.
  • There is a need to ensure that stateless persons are recorded as stateless at the registration stage of their asylum application, as individuals may find it difficult to change their status at a later stage.
  • Stateless persons are likely to face delays in resolving their situation and be left in legal limbo for prolonged periods of time.
  • There is evidence of positive engagement by the International Protection Office (IPO) and International Protection Appeals Tribunal (IPAT) with statelessness in individual cases.


To learn more:

For information on Statelessness in the EU, Norway, and Georgia from the EMN Platform on Statelessness: