How are Ukrainian refugees received in Germany

MAriia returns to room 4010 again. You want to make sure they typed an email address correctly. It’s also about the important things; residence permit. The Ukrainian comes from an area near Lemberg and fled with her two children from the war. She has been here in Frankfurt for nearly half a year now. Article 24 of the Residence Act is familiar to Ukrainian refugees because it promises security.

With this protection status, refugees can stay and work in Germany for at least two years. They are entitled to social benefits, child support, and access to medical care. When Russia invaded Ukraine in February, Federal Interior Minister Nancy Visser (SPD) promised immediate, non-bureaucratic assistance in receiving war refugees.

For the first time in its history, the European Union has activated a regulation that saves Ukrainians from a lengthy asylum procedure: the European Directive on Mass Flows. In German law, this is paragraph 24.

Return to Ukraine only when the war is over

The vast majority of refugees can count on this. Since the outbreak of the war, nearly a million people have traveled to Germany from Ukraine on August 21. According to the calculations of the Federal Ministry of the Interior, 96,546 people were registered in the Central Register of Foreigners. However, this does not mean that they are still in Germany. A “large number” could have traveled to other EU countries or returned to Ukraine. According to the Central Register, as of August 20, 430,440 people had a residence permit and another 218,440 people had a fake certificate, the newspaper says, while the application is still being considered.

The Ukrainian Coordination Center in Frankfurt is located in this building

The Ukrainian Coordination Center in Frankfurt is located in this building

Photo: Lucas Bommel

The residence permit makes it official that there may still be some time before you can return to Ukraine. The longer the war goes on, the more Ukrainians will accept the prospect of staying here for the time being. Maria wants to return to Ukraine when the war is over. But it continues. life too. Maria’s four-year-old son has been attending a kindergarten in Frankfurt since the beginning of June, and her 11-year-old daughter will go to school after the summer holidays in Hesse.

Maria lives with her children with her sister who has been living in Frankfurt for twenty years. Until Maria receives the residence permit in accordance with paragraph 24, she will have to be patient. When she arrived in March, she only had a Ukrainian passport with no biometric data. There are two types of passports in Ukraine, one with biometric data and one without it. Then I applied for a biometric passport at the Ukrainian consulate in Germany. But it is made in Ukraine and is still on its way to Germany. After all, it’s just a formality.

The deadline thing is complicated

Every war refugee must apply for a long-term visa or residence permit in accordance with Article 24 within a period of time. For many, that deadline expires on August 31, but not for everyone. The deadline thing is complicated. Politicians have gone out of sight, and transitions have been extended over and over again. At first it was May 23, but soon it was decided that applications could be submitted until August 31.

But the war is raging with undiminished seriousness, which is why a new deadline has now been set: anyone who flees from Ukraine to Germany by November 30 can stay here for 90 days, but must apply for a residence permit during this time. The idea is that refugees will be registered faster.

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