EU extends temporary protection for Ukrainian refugees until March 2025
The EU Council has extended the temporary protection mechanism for Ukrainians fleeing the war until March 2025
The relevant decision was approved during a meeting in Brussels on September 28.
"In order to provide certainty for more than 4 million Ukrainian refugees currently living in the EU, the Council agreed to extend the temporary protection for people fleeing from Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine from 4 March 2024 to 4 March 2025," the body said in a statement.
In his turn, the Minister of the Interior of Spain, which holds the EU presidency, Fernando Grande-Marlaska Gómez, said, "The EU will support the Ukrainian people for as long as it takes. The prolongation of the protection status offers certainty to the more than 4 million refugees who have found a safe haven in the EU."
Bild reported on the meeting to discuss the extension the day before.
The EU introduced the Temporary Protection Directive after the Russian invasion of Ukraine began on March 4, 2022. According to the rules, Ukrainian refugees have the right to obtain a residence permit without bureaucratic red tape. In addition, Ukrainian citizens can get a job in the EU, send their children to school, and obtain health insurance.
- In January of this year, the UN reported that the number of Ukrainian refugees in Europe was approaching 8 million.
- As of May, four million Ukrainian citizens who fled after Russia's full-scale invasion began in February 2022 were granted temporary protection in the European Union, including about 700,000 who work and another 450,000 who study at schools and universities.
- Ukraine’s Human Rights Ombudsman, Dmytro Lubinets, said that over 8 million Ukrainians have become refugees. Of these, over 5 million have applied for temporary resident status in neighboring Western European countries.
- On September 15, German Interior Minister Nancy Faser spoke in favor of extending temporary protection for Ukrainian refugees for another year, "as long as this terrible war continues."
- On September 19, the European Commission proposed to extend temporary protection for Ukrainians fleeing Russia's aggression against Ukraine from March 4, 2024, to March 3, 2025.