This position, issued in a statement by the office of the Minister of the Presidency, which oversees migration, follows a gathering this morning of around 100 people, mainly citizens of Bangladesh, Pakistan, and India, at the Agency for Integration, Migration and Asylum (AIMA), in Lisbon, to complain about the delays in the granting of residence authorisation cards.

Minister António Leitão Amaro states, quoted in the same statement, said that “this evolution and assessment” carried out in the two weeks since this Government took office, “confirms previous diagnoses regarding the incorrectness of previous political and institutional options and their execution, particularly regarding the process of ending the Foreigners and Borders Service (SEF) and the implementation of AIMA”.

The Government adds that, given the dismemberment of SEF by the previous socialist executive, “hundreds of thousands of cases relating to migrant citizens are pending decision and there are serious difficulties in the functioning of the control, inspection, reception, and integration system”.

The minister also states that he is monitoring the situation, and is in contact with various authorities.

Today's gathering in front of the AIMA headquarters began at around 10:30 am and a representative of these citizens explained to journalists that the discontent has mainly to do with the waiting time, which in some cases exceeds nine months, to obtain the renewal of the residence permit.

According to the Government's program, the executive admits limiting access to residence permits to immigrants with work visas or those looking for work and introducing "quantitative objectives" in the reception of foreigners.

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