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Denmark Had a Goal of Zero Asylum Seekers Until Ukraine Was Invaded by Russia & More Breaking News

The Little Mermaid statue in Copenhagen with Denmark flag

The Danish government had a goal of zero for all groups of asylum seekers until Ukraine was invaded by Russia.

Denmark is the only country that revoked multiple permits and granted protection to only a small percentage of refugees last year. However, the case is not the same for Ukrainians.

Since Denmark is not bound by the EU Temporary Protection Directive due to opt-out on legal issues, the Danish Parliament passed a special act, mirroring the directive except for a few differences – Ukrainians fleeing the war are not included, and a permit will be given for a minimum of two years.

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Such a special act that favours Ukrainians only has been subject to criticism and protests by human rights and refugee organisations, SchengenVisaInfo.com reports.

According to the Commission of the European Union, the current situation is problematic as Denmark is the only country to revoke the Syrian refugees’ permits and only has granted protection to three per cent of all Afghan refugees that made applications in 2021.

“The goodwill and positive measures taken by both national and local administration is also in stark contrast to how other groups of refugees have been received in Denmark – the government had a goal of zero asylum seekers until Ukraine was invaded by Russia,” the statement of the Commission reads.

Ukrainians who are fleeing war can apply for protection in Denmark by filling out an online form and booking a time slot for registrations at one of the offices of the Immigration Service. Persons who are not covered by the special act can make an asylum request at any police or reception centre Sandholm.

As for the accommodation, the Commission has explained that most Ukrainian refugees are staying in private homes temporarily. In addition, some are also accommodated by municipalities of the country in empty buildings, such as sports facilities, closed schools, and military barracks.

“Politicians are pushing to ensure that those arriving from Ukraine are exempt from the harsh restrictions faced by other foreigners and refugees are met with. When it comes to finding more permanent housing, for example, Ukrainians are categorised as ‘non-Western’ and therefore not allowed to move into ‘vulnerable’ housing estates,” Commission added.

The Danish Immigration Service has revealed that as of March 25, around 28,000 persons have arrived from Ukraine. Of the total number, 2,000 of them have applied for asylum and are currently staying in asylum centres, and another 750 have been granted protection under the special act.

Apart from helping with the accommodation and the transport of Ukrainians, the Danish government has established a new partnership with local municipalities, regional administrations, different unions, and the Confederation of Danish Employers in order to coordinate and facilitate the integration of Ukrainians. This means that Ukrainians will be able to access the labour market.

Additionally, refugees have full access to all educational institutions in Denmark on the same terms as Danes. Danish language training is also freely accessible, and all children have full access to school, including new arrivals.

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