IND and Cabinet promise solutions for Ukrainian residence applicants, refugees
The Immigration and Naturalization Service (IND) will be more lenient with regular residence applications from Ukrainians in the coming days, the service said on Friday. Meanwhile, the Cabinet is looking at locations where the Netherlands can receive refugees from Ukraine.
The time period that Ukrainians with biometric passports can stay in the Netherlands without a visa will be extended from 90 to 180 days. The same extension applies for Ukrainians without biometric passports who have applied for a short-stay visa.
It has also been agreed that Ukrainians who exceed the maximum term of their visas will not have any problems, given the current situation. Since Russian troops invaded Ukraine, the IND has telephoned more than 300 concerned people with questions about their right of residence.
Ukrainians who want to come to the Netherlands for a longer period of time –– for example, for work or family reunification –– no longer need to apply for or collect a provisional residence permit (MVV) in Ukraine and can divert to neighboring countries. Under some circumstances, a residence permit can be collected directly in the Netherlands.
Ukrainians applying for asylum will undergo the same procedure and reception in the Netherlands as any asylum seeker, according to the IND. However, State Secretary Eric van der Burg of Asylum Affairs pointed out that Ukrainians with passports will not necessarily need to report as asylum seekers, due to the updated IND regulations.
The Cabinet is also arranging more accommodation for refugees if necessary and Van Der Burg is currently consulting with municipalities, he said. “If people ask for housing, we will accommodate them,” Van Der Burg said. He said no Ukrainians have yet moved to the Netherlands due to Russian violence and he has no idea how many Ukrainians might come.
The Netherlands Council for Refugees has launched a petition calling on the Cabinet to welcome refugees from Ukraine. The organization argued the Dutch asylum policy toward Ukrainians has become obsolete, now that Russia has launched a military operation against the Eastern European country. Ukraine is still on the list of safe countries of origin.
Reporting by ANP