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Eritrea: Procedure for applying for a national identity card, including which office issues such documents and whether an office is located on Fiat street in Asmara; whether the applicant must bring three witnesses with him or her; whether the background of the card has a pattern consisting of the word "Eritrea" repeated 8 times per line; whether "PGE" is printed on the border of the laminate and, if so, its significance; whether the card identifies the bearer's occupation; whether the place of residence appearing on the card is the current place of residence of the bearer or the ancestral place of residence

Publisher Canada: Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada
Author Research Directorate, Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada, Ottawa
Publication Date 8 July 2008
Citation / Document Symbol ERI102851.E
Cite as Canada: Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada, Eritrea: Procedure for applying for a national identity card, including which office issues such documents and whether an office is located on Fiat street in Asmara; whether the applicant must bring three witnesses with him or her; whether the background of the card has a pattern consisting of the word "Eritrea" repeated 8 times per line; whether "PGE" is printed on the border of the laminate and, if so, its significance; whether the card identifies the bearer's occupation; whether the place of residence appearing on the card is the current place of residence of the bearer or the ancestral place of residence, 8 July 2008, ERI102851.E, available at: https://www.refworld.org/docid/49b92b4ac.html [accessed 16 April 2021]
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.

The following information comes from a letter from the Department of Immigration and Nationality of Eritrea that was sent to the Canadian Consulate in Asmara and provided to the Research Directorate by the High Commission of Canada in Nairobi, in correspondence dated 18 June 2008.

The Department of Immigration and Nationality [of Eritrea] would like to provide the answers for the request made by the Canadian High Commission [in] Nairobi, Kenya.

...

2. To obtain the national identity card, a person has to prove that he/she is [of] Eritrean origin. A person is said to be [of] Eritrean origin, if he/she was a resident in Eritrea in 1933. Any one born from such a person (either father or mother, or both) is also considered [of] Eritrean origin.

This can be proved:

– by presenting a certificate of birth,

– three witnesses, who are above the age of 40, or

– any other relevant document.

3. In Asmara, there is no other Immigration office issuing the national identity card, other than the one located in Denden Street 175. [...]

4. The pattern of text material reading "Eritrea" on the background is repeated seven times in one line. Half of the text material which is printed at the beginning or the end of each line could be considered the eighth.

5. 'PGE' stands for the Provisional Government of Eritrea.

6. The personal information regarding occupation is clearly stated on the reverse side of the identity card on the first line. However, it doesn't necessarily reflect the current occupation due to continuous change of status.

7. The place of residence has nothing to do with ancestral place. This information is also subject to change. (Eritrea 18 June 2008)

Information on whether "PGE" is printed on the border of the laminate could not be found among the sources consulted by the Research Directorate.

Please find attached an example of an Eritrean national identity card.

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 additional sources consulted in researching this Information Request.

Reference

Eritrea. 18 June 2008. Department of Immigration and Nationality. Correspondence sent to the Research Directorate through the Canadian Consulate in Asmara and the High Commission of Canada in Nairobi, Kenya.

Attachment

Eritrea. N.d. Eritrean National Identity Card. Specimen provided to the Research Directorate by the High Commission of Canada in Nairobi.

Additional Sources Consulted

Oral source: The embassy of Eritrea in Ottawa did not provide information within the time constraints of this Response.

Internet sites, including: Afrol News, Amnesty International (AI), Asmara and Eritrea, awate.com, British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), Compass Direct News, Embassy of the State of Eritrea in Stockholm, Eritreans for Human and Democratic Rights (EHDR-UK), European Country of Origin Information Network (ecoi.net), Factiva, Freedom House, Human Rights Watch (HRW), Integrated Regional Information Networks (IRIN), Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (IDMC), International Crisis Group, Ministry of Information (shabait.com), Keesing Document Checker, Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), Reuters.

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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