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EU Border Agency Says It’s Ready to Assist Member States in Light of Situation in Ukraine

The European Border and Coast Guard Agency (Frontex) claims it is ready to assist any of its member states in dealing with the situation at their borders, which resulted from the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

According to a press release, the agency monitors the situation in Ukraine and its borders with EU member states non-stop and is ready to provide its support when needed.

The Agency has activated Crisis Response Teams to coordinate its work to support Member States in the event of an increase in the number of people fleeing the conflict zone. In the press release, Frontex noted that Frontex is able to deploy its permanent officers within days in response to potential requests for support from member states at the border with Ukraine.

Within the first five days of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, more than half a million people sought safety abroad, including here in EU member states, four of which – Poland, Slovakia, Hungary and Romania – share borders with Ukraine.

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, Filippo Grandi, confirmed in a tweet published today, on February 28, at noon that “more than 500,000 refugees have now fled from Ukraine to neighboring countries.”

>> Ukraine’s neighbors are ready for an influx of migrants

According to the same order, about half of these refugees crossed the border into Poland. Only in the last three days of the invasion the Ministry of the Interior announced that 115 thousand people crossed the border from Ukraine into Poland.

But on February 26, the Ukrainian side closed part of the lanes for passenger cars, and people were allowed to enter on foot. The corridors themselves were opened later, which helped the Polish authorities to accept Ukrainian refugees into the country more quickly.

“Since the decision was made to open the lane to pedestrian traffic, only 5,000 people have been evacuated within two hours,” Deputy Minister Bauwe Ziffernaker said regarding the situation. also reported that about 26,000 refugees from Ukraine had arrived in Slovakia by Saturday. On the other hand, the European Union is preparing to receive at least five million refugees.

“I think we need to prepare for millions,” EU Home Affairs Commissioner Ylva Johansson told reporters in Brussels, where a meeting of EU interior ministers took place on the war in Ukraine.

>> Invasion of Ukraine: these are the procedures that await Ukrainian asylum seekers in the EU

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