EU to give temporary protection to all refugees fleeing conflict in Ukraine

EU to give temporary protection to all refugees fleeing conflict in Ukraine

The European Union will grant temporary protection to all refugees fleeing the conflict in Ukraine, according to the bloc’s Commissioner for Home Affairs Ylva Johansson.  

Johansson made the announcement in a tweet Thursday, calling it “a historic decision.” 

French Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin provided further details on how the protection will be offered in a press release: 

“This device will permit EU member states to offer persons fleeing the conflict in Ukraine a response adapted to their situation. Eligible persons can benefit from a protective status similar to that of refugee, in any EU country for a one-year period which may be reviewed,” according to the statement.

EU ministers met on Thursday to activate Directive 2001/55/CE, which provides “temporary protection in the case of a massive influx of displaced persons,” according to the press release.  

The French presidency of the Council of the European Union and the European Commission welcomed the decision, saying it “reflected the EU’s full engagement in showing solidarity towards Ukraine and assuming its duty towards victims of this unjustifiable war.” 

“The European Union will continue to do everything to help Ukraine and the victims of the war,” Darmanin stressed.  

UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi called the EU’s decision “unprecedented.” 

“It will provide protection to millions on the move. We encourage its swift and broad application,” he said in a tweet.  

There have been more than a million Ukrainian refugee arrivals since the Russian invasion began on Feb. 24, according to the latest update from the UN Refugee Agency.  

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