Refugees who have studied in Ukraine must register by August 31. They then receive a so-called fantasy certificate for a period of six months.
DBA / Christoph Soder
Bisma Mirzankar studied international economics in Ukraine for two years before the outbreak of the war. She now lives in Berlin-Kreuzberg. “We are very happy with the decision,” she says. “Now we have more time to clear our heads.” Berlin’s Senate decided on Tuesday to allow refugees from so-called third countries who have studied in Ukraine to stay for another six months.
Mirzankar is from India and graduated from high school in Saudi Arabia. You are currently learning German at level A2. She wants to stay in Germany with her Nigerian fiancé who also studied in Ukraine. The former student says the experience of war has changed a lot. That’s why you want to go into foster care. “I am very good at it. And Germany needs nurses.”
According to Article 24 of the Residence Act, Ukrainian citizens and their family members as well as refugees and persons entitled to asylum recognized in Ukraine receive a two-year residence permit and access to work, education and social benefits in Germany without any bureaucracy. Third country nationals whose country of origin is designated as safe do not fall under this regulation under the EU Mass Flow Directive.
Six months for students and two weeks for other groups
After months of talks, the Senate decided to issue a fictional six-month certificate for the study of third-country nationals after applying for a residence permit in accordance with Article 24 of the Residence Act. The previous regulation for third-country nationals of Ukraine expires on August 31. The persons concerned must be notified by then. The Senate passed the new regulation on the basis of a proposal by Senator of the Interior and Senator of Science. It only applies to students and not to trainees and staff. Thus, Berlin follows Hamburg’s example.
Mayor Franziska Jaffee introduced the topic at the press conference after Tuesday’s Senate hearing: “We have different case groups involved, and this is something for gourmets.” After that, she addressed only one group: third-country nationals who could prove that they studied in Ukraine on February 24. It has already reported around 150 infected people.
Givi said one wants to give those affected the opportunity to orient themselves and create the conditions for obtaining a residence permit. For example, to continue their studies in Berlin. “As a general rule, this should not be possible because language level C1 for university admission is difficult to reach within six months,” said the Refugee Council in Berlin. The Refugee Council calls for the inclusion of all third-country nationals who have fled Ukraine and the extension of the list to twelve months.
“I am pleased that the Senate has come up with a Berlin solution for students from third-country nationals from Ukraine. It is now important for those affected to get relevant information quickly,” says Katharina Nievedzial, Integration Commissioner at the Berlin Senate. A detailed consultation is recommended in each individual case, they refer to the Welcome Center. Detailed information leaflets are also planned for all institutions providing advice to third-country nationals. “Prospective employers should also be informed, which is why I will contact the rooms,” Niewiedzial says.
Senator from the Ministry of the Interior, Iris Springer, is pleased with the “opportunity to permanently attract potential highly qualified specialists to Berlin after their studies.” When asked, Sabine Beckler, a spokeswoman for the Senate Home Office, mentioned two options for third-country nationals in addition to applying for a residence permit: applying for asylum or receiving support upon returning to their home country. Within two weeks, third-country nationals who were not studying in Ukraine when the war broke out in Germany will be illegal.