Kurdish man, Filipino wife granted special residence permission after overstaying visas
Mainichi Shinbun March 25, 2008
Courtesy Jeff Korpa
KAWAGUCHI, Saitama — The Justice Ministry has decided to grant special residence permission to a Kurdish man, his Filipino wife and their 7-year-old daughter, overturning its earlier decision to deport the couple for overstaying their visas.
The ministry’s move came after the Tokyo High Court suggested a settlement in the case in which the family’s request to nullify the ministry’s order to deport them had been turned down by the Tokyo District Court.
“After the high court proposed a settlement, we determined that this would be the best way to grant them special residence permission from a humanitarian perspective,” said Justice Minister Kunio Hatoyama during a press conference following a Cabinet meeting on Tuesday.
As early as Tuesday, special residence permission will be granted to Taskin, 32, a Kurdish man with Turkish citizenship, his Filipino wife, Beltran, 41, and their daughter, Zilan, who live together in Kawaguchi, Saitama Prefecture.
Taskin and Beltran met each other in 1998 while they were overstaying their visas in Japan. They got married after Zilan was born. However, the Tokyo Regional Immigration Bureau issued an order in 2004 to deport Taskin to Turkey and Beltran and Zilan to the Philippines.
The family filed a suit against the order, saying, “If we were deported, it would be difficult for us to live together because of religious and other reasons.” Taskin also maintained that he could be persecuted if he returns to Turkey because he had refused to serve in the military.
In March last year, the Tokyo District Court dismissed the family’s demand to nullify the deportation order, but the Tokyo High Court proposed in November that the case should be discussed with an eye to an interim solution.
The family is currently on provisional release status. They are poised to drop their appeal once they are actually granted special residence permission.