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Policy Response

This section provides an overview of international policy responses to the  Russian Federation's military invasion of Ukraine in February 2022 and an increasing number of people on the move in and outside Ukraine. Further, this section also features information of migration governance (MGI) in Ukraine.

Protection Needs (Short)

Summary: Policy Responses

 

Many countries have provided a swift response to the war in Ukraine and have agreed to take in Ukrainian war refugees under different immigration schemes and conditions. As of 3 March, countries of the European Union have agreed to address the needs of displaced people from Ukraine quickly and without complicated bureaucratic procedures. (European Agency for Asylum, 2022) Immediate protection will be granted to all Ukrainian refugees for up to three years within the European Union. Between 24 February and 10 May 2022, nearly 6 million refugees have fled Ukraine to neighbouring countries (UNHCR, 2022).[1]

 

Ukraine Response Slovakia 2022

 

The European Union has also launched an initiative to fund support for those fleeing Ukraine. On March 8th, the Commission adopted the Cohesion Action for Refugees in Europe (CARE), which consists of emergency support to be used to address the demands that may arise from the new refugee inflows such as temporary accommodation, food, medical care and water supply. At the same time, this fund can be also used by member states to implement policies for long-term integration of refugees from Ukraine (European Union, 2022). On 23 March, the European Commission outlined actions to support member states in meeting the needs of those fleeing the war in Ukraine, including special protection for children, access to education, access to healthcare, access to jobs and access to accommodation and housing (European Commission, 2022).

As of 4 March, the United Kingdom has offered support to Ukrainians who have family members in the UK through the Ukraine Family Scheme Visa schemes, which consists of welcoming Ukrainian citizens and certain residents to join their UK based families for up to three years (HOME OFFICE, 2022).  As of 14 March, the UK is expanding this policy so private entities can sponsor Ukrainian citizens to settle in the UK regardless of whether they have family ties in the country (Home Office, 2022A). Additionally, as of March 7, the UK announced that it is granting Ukraine £100 million in aid for humanitarian purposes and assistance (HOME OFFICE, 2022B). And as of March 21, Ukrainians in the UK can apply for benefits (Home Office, 2022C). 

Countries in the Americas have also responded to the situation. As of 3 March, the United States has designated Ukraine for Temporary Protection Status for 18 months, meaning that Ukrainians that were on US soil when the invasion erupted can remain and work in the US without fear of deportation (Department of Homeland Security, 2022). On 24 March, the Unites States announced plans to welcome up to 100,000 refugees from Ukraine and provide more than $1 billion in new funding towards humanitarian assistance (The White House, 2022). 

On 19 April, the US government announced a new cut-off date for the designation of Temporary Protection Status (TPS) for Ukrainians. Originally, as of 1 March 2022, Ukrainian citizens residing in the US were eligible to apply for TPS, but the new designation announced by Secretary Mayorkas has moved the date to 11 April 2022 , which would allow more Ukrainians to legally remain in the US(Department of Homeland Security, 2022b).  The US government also announced on 19 April that work regulations for Ukrainian student under F1 visas are to be relaxed due to the economic hardship as a result of the conflict in Ukraine (USCIS, 2022).  

As of 3 March, Canada launched two immigration schemes for Ukrainians, one for those wishing to settle permanently and reunite with their settled family members in Canada, and one temporary scheme that enables Ukrainians to remain in the territory for two years. There is no cap on the number of individuals that can apply. Other immigration schemes to Canada remain open for Ukrainians and their applications will be prioritized (Government of Canada, 2022).

In the southern hemisphere of the Americas,  Argentina launched a statement on March 3, explaining that it will grant Ukrainian nationals humanitarian visas, they will be able to reside in Argentina as refugees for three years, and then have the option to apply for citizenship (President’s Office Argentina, 2022). As of 3 March, Brazil launched a similar scheme for Ukrainians, where they can remain for two years and then apply for permanent residency (President’s Office Brazil, 2022).

With regards to third country nationals that were residing in Ukraine when the invasion took place, such as the case of Indian and Nigerian students, the EU directive agrees that these individuals shall also be offered protection, but contingent on that these citizens can be repatriated to their home countries (European Commission, 2022) .So far, India who has an emigrant population in Ukraine, including 18,095 international students, has launched ”Operation Ganga” which aims to bring back home its citizens from bordering countries with Ukraine (Ministry of External Affairs India, 2022).

 


[1] UNHCR, 2022. Data extracted on 11 May 2022. The dashboard is available here: https://data2.unhcr.org/en/situations/ukraine

 

 

Migration Governance Profile of Ukraine

 

The Migration Governance Indicators (MGI) initiative is a policy-benchmarking programme led by the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and implemented with research and analysis from the Economist Impact. Migration governance profiles describe examples of well-developed areas governance structures and areas with potential for further development, as evaluated through the six domains of the Migration Governance Indicators (MGI). These address migrants’ rights, a “whole-of-government” approach, partnerships, socioeconomic well-being of migrants, the mobility dimensions of crises, and safe and orderly migration.

MGI Ukraine 2021

Download the migration governance profile for Ukraine here.

Consular Services

In 2020, a total of 117 foreign diplomatic missions of Ukraine provided consular work, including 82 - consular subdivisions of embassies of Ukraine, 19 - Consulates General of Ukraine, 14 - Consulates of Ukraine, 2 - Branches of Embassies of Ukraine[1].

According to the Consular Charter of Ukraine[2], the consular institutions of Ukraine protect the rights and interests of Ukraine, legal entities and citizens of Ukraine abroad, assist people of Ukrainian descent and their descendants in maintaining contacts with Ukraine.

The Ukrainian government actively cooperates with diaspora communities, as foreseen by Art. 10(1)-10(6) of the Law 'On Ukrainians Abroad'[3]. The MFA and foreign diplomatic missions of Ukraine cooperate with organisations of foreign Ukrainians registered outside the country, such as the World Congress of Ukrainians, European Congress of Ukrainians, the Congress of Ukrainians of Canada, the Ukrainian Congressional Committee of America, the Union of Ukrainian Organizations of Australia, the coordinating councils of non-governmental organisations of foreign Ukrainians.

Crisis and Emergency Response

The Ukrainian State Emergency Response Plan[4] defines assistance measures to the population. Ukraine's Civil Protection Code[5], which regulates crises such as environmental emergencies, armed conflict, or mass revolt, outlines evacuation and other measures to protect civilians in any crisis. Under this Code, foreigners and stateless persons residing in Ukraine on legal grounds, however, enjoy the same rights as the citizens of Ukraine in times of crisis.

Communication in crisis

The Ukrainian Decree 'On approval of the Instruction for the organisation of the notification on the threat of emergence or occurrence of emergencies and communication in the field of civil protection[6], guides the operations of an automated centralised system to notify the public in case of a threat or occurrence of emergencies, the system relays communication through telecommunications networks and television networks among other communication channels.

The Department of Consular Service of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has an Anti-Crisis Centre, which is tasked with ensuring prompt response to crises and emergencies that pose real or potential threats to the safety, life and health of Ukrainian citizens abroad, as well as cases of our citizens in difficulty caused by gross violations of their rights on the territory of foreign states. One of the main functions of the Anti-Crisis Centre is to ensure the functioning of the "hotline" of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (receiving appeals about victims, providing advisory assistance to citizens of Ukraine in real-time on actions in case of crisis)


[1] Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine, 'Diplomatic institutions' -- "Дипломатичні установи", https://mfa.gov.ua/en/foreign-diplomatic-institutions-ukraine

[2] 'Consular Charter of Ukraine' -- "Консульський статут України", 2 April 1994, https://zakon.rada.gov.ua/laws/show/127/94#Text

[3] Law of Ukraine, 'On Ukrainians Abroad' -- "Про закордонних українців", 6 June 2012, http://zakon2.rada.gov.ua/laws/show/1582-15

[4] Сabinet of Ministers of Ukraine, Decree 'On approval of the State Emergency Response Plan' - "Про затвердження Плану реагування на надзвичайні ситуації державного рівня", 14 March 2018, https://zakon.rada.gov.ua/laws/show/223-2018-%D0%BF#Text

[5] Law of Ukraine, 'Civil Protection Code of Ukraine' -- "Кодекс цивільного захисту України", 2 October 2012, http://zakon4.rada.gov.ua/laws/show/5403-17

[6] Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine, Decree 'On approval of the Instruction for the organization of the notification on threat of emergence or occurence of emergencies and communication in the field of civil protection' -- "Про затвердження Положення про організацію оповіщення про загрозу виникнення або виникнення надзвичайних ситуацій та зв’язку у сфері цивільного захисту", 27 September 2017, https://zakon.rada.gov.ua/laws/show/733-2017-%D0%BF#Text

Disclaimer: This webpage curates public information and data. The opinions expressed in this webpage are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the International Organization for Migration (IOM), nor its Member States and other stakeholders. The designations employed and the presentation of material throughout the webpage do not imply expression of any opinion or endorsement whatsoever on the part of IOM, its Member States and other stakeholders concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area, or of its authorities, or concerning its frontiers or boundaries. While the portal section "Ukraine: Migration Statistics, Policy and Humanitarian Responses" has been made possible with funding from the European Union, the German Federal Foreign Office and the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA) Switzerland, the contents on this section do not necessarily reflect their official policy or position.