Last Updated: Tuesday, 02 September 2014, 13:52 GMT

Palestine: Procedures to obtain a Palestinian passport in the West Bank; the documents to be submitted and whether the Palestinian Authority requires original identity documents or accepts photocopies; whether the passport applicant has to appear in person to apply for or receive a passport; the features of a passport; the name of the signature on page three of the passport; the duration between the application for and the reception of a passport; whether a person may have two valid passports that were issued on different dates; the prevalence of fraudulent Palestinian passports (January 2008 - April 2010)

Publisher Canada: Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada
Publication Date 30 April 2010
Citation / Document Symbol PSE103458.E
Cite as Canada: Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada, Palestine: Procedures to obtain a Palestinian passport in the West Bank; the documents to be submitted and whether the Palestinian Authority requires original identity documents or accepts photocopies; whether the passport applicant has to appear in person to apply for or receive a passport; the features of a passport; the name of the signature on page three of the passport; the duration between the application for and the reception of a passport; whether a person may have two valid passports that were issued on different dates; the prevalence of fraudulent Palestinian passports (January 2008 - April 2010), 30 April 2010, PSE103458.E, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/4e4383262.html [accessed 3 September 2014]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

A 14 March 2009 article on the non-governmental Palestinian Ma'an News Agency website indicates that the head of the passports department in the West Bank stated on 14 March 2009 that new Palestinian passports were to be available in one week. He stated that they were to have black covers, be valid for a period of five years instead of three years, cost 210 shekels or 50 United States (US) dollars and contain an electronic code to assist in the identification of the possessor and in the reduction of fraud (Ma'an News Agency 14 Mar. 2009).

In 23 April 2010 correspondence, an official with the Canadian Embassy in Tel Aviv provided the following information:

Effective 1 April 2009 the Palestinian National Authority began issuing new Palestinian passports. Old passports remained valid but will be replaced as they expire. The new passports differ from the old passports in two significant features: the cover of the new ordinary passport will now be black instead of green, and the VIP passports will continue to be red. The pages of the passports, both ordinary and VIP, will be pink. The background of the photos in the new passports will be blue instead of red. All passports will be valid for 5 years.

The Official also provided the following information, obtained from the Ministry of Interior of the Palestinian National Authority (PNA) and the Canadian Representative Office in Ramallah, on the procedures for Palestinians in the West Bank to obtain Palestinian passports (Canada 23 Apr. 2010). Applicants aged 16 years old and above are required to appear in person at the Ministry of Interior's passport office in the applicant's district in order to submit the application for a passport or to receive a passport (ibid.). The applicant is issued a receipt upon the submission of the application, and a passport officer informs the applicant of the time to return and receive the new passport (ibid.). The processing time is approximately one week, but may be longer during the summer (ibid.). The applicants submit a valid Palestinian identity document (ID) card, four photos as of 1 April 2009 on a blue background which replaces the former red background, a birth certificate, evidence of employment, the application form and, if applicable, any previous or existing passport (ibid.). The identity documents may be originals or certified copies (ibid.). The signature of the director of the passport office is on page three of the passport (ibid.). The Passport Office prohibits people from possessing two valid passports concurrently (ibid.). There are "no fraudulent passports" in the West Bank (ibid.).

Further information on the issuing of Palestinian passports in the West Bank could not found among the sources consulted by the Research Directorate.

This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the Research Directorate within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim for refugee protection. Please find below the list of sources consulted in researching this Information Request.

References

Canada. 23 April 2010. Canadian Embassy, Tel Aviv. Correspondence from an official.

Ma'an News Agency. 14 March 2009. "Palestinian Authority to Issue New 'Anti-Fraud' Passports." (BBC 15 Mar. 2009/Factiva)

Additional Sources Consulted

Oral sources: The Palestinian General Delegation in Ottawa and the Israeli Information Center for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories (B'Tselem) in Jerusalem did not respond to requests for information within the time constraints of this Response.

Internet sources, including: Al-Ahram Weekly, Al-Jazeera, Al Quds Center for Political Studies, Alternative Information Center (AIC), Amnesty International (AI), Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI), BADIL Resource Center for Palestinian Residency and Refugee Rights, Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies (BESA), British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), Fédération internationale des ligues des droits de l'homme (FIDH), Freedom House, Haaretz, Human Rights First, Human Rights Watch, International Crisis Group, International Organization for Migration (IOM), Israeli Information Center for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories (B'Tselem), Israel-Palestine Center for Research and Information (IPCRI), Jerusalem Post, Keesing's Reference System, Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI), Middle East Online, Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA), Minority Rights Group (MRG), OneWorld.net, Palestine Chronicle, Palestinian Human Rights Monitoring Group (PHRMG), United Nations (UN) Integrated Regional Information Networks (IRIN), Washington Report on Middle East Affairs,Y NetNews.

Copyright notice: This document is published with the permission of the copyright holder and producer Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (IRB). The original version of this document may be found on the offical website of the IRB at http://www.irb-cisr.gc.ca/en/. Documents earlier than 2003 may be found only on Refworld.

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