Portugal grants temporary protection to over 23,000 refugees
More than 23,000 requests for temporary protection have been granted so far by Portugal to people who fled the war in Ukraine, according to the latest update by the immigration and borders service, SEF.
SEF states that 23,419 requests for temporary protection have been granted since the beginning of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on February 24 until 1pm on Monday.
According to SEF, among the Ukrainian refugees who arrived in Portugal and benefitted from temporary protection, 8,381 are minors.
SEF has an online platform, in three languages, for requests for temporary protection by Ukrainian residents.
The ‘SEFforUkraine.sef.pt’ platform “enables all Ukrainian citizens and their relatives (households), as well as any foreign citizen residing in Ukraine, to make ‘online’ a request for temporary protection for one year, extendable for two six-month periods,” according to SEF.
During the process for temporary protection in Portugal, citizens who request it have access to their tax, social security and national health service numbers, so they can benefit from these services and enter the labour market.
The platform also contains information on other aspects of reception and integration of displaced persons.
On February 24, Russia launched a military offensive in Ukraine that has killed at least 1,119 civilians, including 139 children, and wounded 1,790, including 200 children, according to the latest figures from the UN, which warns that the actual number of civilian victims is likely to be much higher.
The war has caused the flight of 10 million people, including more than 3.8 million refugees in neighbouring countries and almost 6.5 million internally displaced persons.
The UN estimates that some 13 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance in Ukraine.
The Russian invasion was condemned by the international community at large, which responded by sending arms to Ukraine and strengthening economic and political sanctions on Moscow.