Cyprus backs mandatory resettlement of Ukrainian refugees

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Cyprus supports the mandatory resettlement of migrants from countries currently receiving large waves of Ukrainian refugees, said Interior Minister Nicos Nouris.

He said EU Interior Ministers expressed their support for the sanctions being imposed on Russia and condemned the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

“In addition to the decisions of the past few days, the Council of Ministers of the Interior decided to activate a specific EU directive that allows for temporary protection to Ukrainians wanting to move away from the country, while also expressing our support to those countries neighbouring Ukraine and receive the largest numbers of Ukrainian refugees.

“Cyprus asked and argued for the application of mandatory resettlement from these countries if they request it, so there is real solidarity towards the countries facing this migratory pressure today.

“Poland, which is facing the largest pressures today, needs exactly this increased support, and our position is that if it is requested, there should be mandatory resettlement and not voluntary.”

Since the beginning of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on February 24, more than 115,000 refugees have crossed into Poland.

Anyone from Ukraine is allowed entry, even those who do not hold valid passports.

The United Nations Refugee Agency says more than 120,000 Ukrainian refugees have left the country since Russia invaded.