EU to Allow Ukrainian Refugees to Stay for up to Three Years

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The European Union is planning to allow Ukrainians fleeing the war to stay and work in the Union for a period of up to three years.

It's believed that as many as 300,000 Ukrainian refugees have already entered the EU through bordering member nations Poland, Romania, Slovakia and Hungary.

French Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin said EU interior ministers have asked the European Commission to draft proposals that would grant Ukrainian refugees protection.

"It is our duty to take in those who flee war," Darmanin said.

Details are expected to be agreed upon when ministers meet on Thursday.

EU Home Affairs Commissioner Ylva Johansson said the majority of ministers support the move.

"We already see a lot of Ukrainians leaving the countries of first entry and go to other member states, especially those that have a big Ukrainian population already," she said. "Poland is one of them but also Italy, Portugal, Spain, Germany, the Czech Republic."

German Interior Minister Nancy Faeser claimed that all 27 EU member states were willing to accept refugees from Ukraine.

"This is a strong response by Europe to the terrible suffering that Putin inflicts with his criminal war of aggression," she said. "Together, we stand in solidarity with the people of Ukraine."

The UN estimates that as many as four million refugees are expected to leave Ukraine, mostly women, children and the elderly as men aged between 18 and 60 are expected to stay and fight.

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