The first Syrian asylum-seekers to be relocated to Ireland under the European Union’s troubled relocation programme are due to arrive within the next week to ten days.
The Department of Justice confirmed a Syrian family would arrive “before the end of January.”
The Government originally made provision for around 20 refugees to be relocated to Ireland at the beginning of December.
However, the process has been held up by logistical problems at the so-called hotspots in Greece and Turkey where large numbers of refugees have been arriving.
It is understood the Syrian family will have originally arrived in the Greek island of Lesbos from Turkey.
“Following a request from the Greek authorities Ireland has now agreed to accept our first Syrian family who are not refugees but asylum seekers in Greece under the relocation programme,” a department statement said.
Under the European Commission’s relocation programme it was envisaged up to 160,000 refugees would be relocated to other EU member states after they had crossed into Greece and Italy.
So far less than 300 have been relocated.