The refugee situation in Lauenburg

Ratzeburg. On February 24, 2022, Russia launched its attack on Ukraine. Six months have passed since then. Six months during which millions of people fled Ukraine in fear for their lives, children, relatives and friends. Many of them came to Germany – as well as to the Duchy of Lauenburg. How has the refugee situation in the region evolved since then?

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According to district spokesperson Tobias Frohnert, a total of 2,100 Ukrainians were accepted into the district from spring to mid-August (as of August 11). The number continues to rise, but at a slightly slower rate than it initially did. At the start of the war, between 200 and 300 new refugees arrived in the area each week. Now about 40 weeks.

Refugees are registered in government housing

Unlike February and March, refugees no longer enter the region directly from Ukraine. At first there were primary reception centers, such as Riemannhalle in Ratzeburg, where transports for refugees arrived every day.

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“Refugees from Ukraine now usually arrive in the Duchy of Lauenburg from state shelters where they are already registered,” explains Tobias Fronert. Next in Bad Segeberg. In the region, distribution is then made directly to the municipalities where housing is available.

This is how the region takes care of refugees

According to Tobias Frohnert, the rule is as follows: refugees who arrive in the region must first report to the Migration Office in Ratzeburg. From there they go directly to new accommodations, usually within two to three hours. On a separate date a few days later, the refugees will then receive a so-called fictitious certificate, which entitles them to stay. It is the basis of everything else, such as a job or a place in school for the children.

According to Tobias Frohnert, some certificates can also be issued before the subsequent trip to the new place of residence, provided that the immigration authorities have sufficient time. The district spokesperson also explains: “Anyone who does not yet have a passport upon arrival must obtain it from their consulate and submit it once to the immigration authorities once it has been issued.”

Millions of Ukrainians are fleeing the war

According to the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees (BAMF) Since the outbreak of war on February 24, 2022, more than 967,000 refugees from Ukraine have been registered in Germany (as of August 21). However, there are no surveys on the number of registered refugees who may have traveled to other countries or been registered twice.

United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees It is estimated that as of August 17, more than 10.7 million people have already fled Ukraine as a result of the war. This number is measured at border crossings. In some cases, more than 200,000 refugees were counted per day.

facts and figures About the Ukraine war and the influx of refugees can be found here, among other things.

Immigration authorities are very busy

Due to the constant influx of refugees since the spring, the county’s immigration authorities are currently operating at full capacity. “Currently, all these cases that arrived in the region are handled in the emergency housing in Riemannhall in Ratzburg at the beginning of the war. In addition, there are the daily business that continues unchanged,” says Tobias Fronert. Therefore, it is currently difficult to gain access to power. If possible, customers should use the online appointment portal at

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Community Accommodation in Gudo

Refugees who have already registered with the immigration authorities are usually accommodated in private accommodation in Lauenburg. The county does not collect any numbers on exactly how many people live in the place. The Duchy of Lauenburg also has one community residence in Godot. According to the district, the facility was recently at full capacity because parts of the building were destroyed in a fire. But: “With the addition of a container housing complex on the site, free capacities are now available again,” says Tobias Fronert.

Accommodation is becoming scarce

The district spokesperson stresses that for now it can still be guaranteed that all new arrivals will find a place to stay. However, the abilities were slowly coming to an end. So Tobias Fronert predicts: “It is likely that the people who will come to us in the next few weeks will be housed in community facilities for a longer period of time.”

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Fewer pet-friendly accommodations

A problem for many refugees when looking for housing is their pets, for example, a Ukrainian family recently could not find housing with their dog “Pax”. So an employee of the immigration office took care of the animal on a voluntary basis. Read the full story about it here.

They have arrived safely in Lauenburg: Irina Shishman and Denis Krivenko from Ukraine, here with Lena Lavasani (translator) and Shih Tzu “Pax”

According to Tobias Fronert, such situations “occasionally happen”. “The accommodation options in which animals can be kept are becoming less and less. Animals are often not allowed in group housing or in rented apartments,” he says.

These rules apply to Ukrainian animals

There are also a lot of rules for entering Ukrainian animals. For example, full protection against rabies vaccination must be demonstrated. “If this is not possible, vaccinations can usually be reimbursed at a later time. But this usually entails a quarantine commitment at an appropriate quarantine station, for example at the Mölln animal shelter,” says Tobias Fronert. However, this is a special regulation issued during the war. Normally, the import of animals must be registered in advance and all vaccinations and isolations must be carried out in the home country.

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Tierheim Mölln accepts Ukrainian pets in emergencies

At the beginning of the war, when many refugees were still arriving at the initial reception in Riemannhalle, the pets they brought with them were taken care of by, in cooperation with the animal welfare organization Mölln-Ratzeburg. However, since the initial reception center closed in April, the volunteer animal rescuers have had nothing to do with it.

“We currently only have three Ukrainian dogs staying with us temporarily because their owners are not allowed to take them to the property,” says Patricia Becker, who runs an animal shelter in Mölln and works for Animals in quarantine.

According to Patricia Picker, several places for Ukrainian pets at the Möllner Animal Shelter have been reserved for emergencies. “We promised the area that,” the animal shelter says. However, it is currently rarely used.

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