Mark Cumara, a 23-year-old Icelandic resident of Filipino origin has been given permission to stay in Iceland while the Directorate of Immigration reviews his case. As an illegal immigrant, Cumara was told to leave the country by September 16.
“I just can’t stop smiling. I’m thrilled about not having to leave my family,” Cumara told 24 Stundir. “Now I can continue working here and help my family abroad […]. I want to thank everyone who participated in this case.”
Cumara has lived with his mother and foster-father in Thorlákshöfn in southwest Iceland for five years where he works in the fish processing plant Frostfiskur. Both Cumara’s mother and foster-father are Icelandic citizens as are his sister, grandmother and grandfather.
When Cumara arrived with his mother in Iceland from the Philippines in 2003 he was 17. When he turned 18 and became a legal adult his residence permit expired. Since then no one has commented on Cumara being an illegal immigrant, who has paid his taxes and debts like other residents.
According to law, illegal immigrants must leave the country, and Cumara had time to do so until early next week, but now Cumara can stay in Iceland while his case is being worked on at the directorate. It is however uncertain whether his residence permit will be renewed.
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