Spain to ease restrictions on young migrants to legalise status

Spain will make it easier for unaccompanied young migrants to obtain residence and work permits.

Under new rules, young migrants will be entitled to documents after three months in Spain, instead of the current nine months.

Unaccompanied children will also need to prove that they receive €470 a month from a social security support program, in order to get a residence and work permit.

Previously they had to show higher income to receive and retain just a residence permit.

Around 15,000 refugees are expected to benefit from the amendments unveiled on Tuesday.

The Spanish government says the decision aims to integrate migrants, who may be abandoned by authorities. Non-governmental organisations have pressed Madrid for years to make the changes to immigration regulations.

Spain has struggled to cope with large migrant arrivals from Africa in recent years, most by sea.

More than 30,000 migrants have entered Spain so far this year, 37% higher than in the same period last year, according to the United Nations.

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