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08 Jan. 2024

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Why do foreigners return to live in Ukraine despite the war?

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Why do foreigners return to live in Ukraine despite the war?

Most foreigners left when the full-scale invasion began, but many have returned and continue to build their lives in Ukraine despite all the threats. Find out more about why foreigners are returning to Ukraine

Take care of insurance for safe entry into Ukraine
Take care of insurance for safe entry into Ukraine
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Before the full-scale invasion, a lot of foreigners lived and studied in Ukraine. Many of them were students, as Ukraine remains a popular educational destination even in times of war. According to Olena Shapovalova, director of the Ukrainian State Center for International Education, students from all over the world studied in Ukraine before the start of the great war.


"Until February 24, 2022, Ukrainian universities provided education to more than 84,000 young people from 158 countries, from all possible continents. As of January 1, 2023, more than 50 thousand foreign students were studying in our country," she wrote on LB.ua.


Read more about how a foreigner can enter Ukrainian universities here.


At the same time, not only students are returning to Ukraine, but also citizens who have built their lives here for a long time and decided that the war will not stand in their way.


Why do foreigners live in Ukraine during the war?


The New York Times told the stories of dozens of foreigners who decided to live in Ukraine despite all the risks associated with the war. Among them are students, refugees from other countries, and immigrants.


For example, Palestinian Abdalalil Regi left for Britain at the beginning of the full-scale invasion, but returned in the summer of 2022. Today he continues to work as a doctor.


"We have a choice, but we prefer to be in Ukraine. We know that our future is here, and we will stay," he says.


Abdullah Hossein al-Rabii, a Syrian, has a restaurant in Kyiv and a Ukrainian wife and has no plans to leave the country.


"I'm not stuck in Ukraine, I don't want to leave. The worst thing is that you used to be a refugee, then you escaped and can become a refugee again," he explains.


Yehea, a Syrian woman, has lived in Ukraine since 2012, left for Germany at the beginning of the war, but returned to Ukraine in May 2022 to give birth to her son.


"The war is not over yet, and the psychological damage it causes is exhausting. But you get used to it. And we, like Syrians who came out of the war, are safe here. We were happy here, we lived comfortably," she said.


Wang Zheng, a Chinese man, has been studying in Ukraine since 2017, when the war started, he switched to a master's program. He said that he and his girlfriend plan to continue building their lives here.


"I feel like this is my second homeland," he said.




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At the same time, a study by the Ukrainian State Center for International Education (USCE) proves that foreigners not only love Ukraine, but also see many prospects for themselves here.


"I personally know many successful, highly qualified and well-paid doctors who studied in Ukraine," says Sharma Animesh from India.


"I chose to study here because it is based on European standards, and I studied information about Ukraine beforehand," says Onur Alp Durmuş from Turkey.


"I looked at many different factors: regions, weather, culture. It was all very similar to what I was used to in the US, which made it easier to get used to the new environment. The main challenge was living in a country where English is not the main language, and it was scary, but I overcame that fear. I know that many people came here for friends or family, but I didn't know anyone at the university I chose, and I took it as a challenge. And I'm glad I did," said Victoria-Maria Unachukwu from the United States.


Thus, returning to Ukraine and building a life here is a conscious choice of many foreigners, and even the war does not stop them on this path.


Safety in Ukraine during the war


To ensure a safe stay in Ukraine, you should take care of reliable health insurance covering military risks in advance. This applies not only to those who live or study in Ukraine on a permanent basis, but also to those who are planning a business trip or a short tourist trip. For foreign citizens, such insurance is mandatory for entry into Ukraine, as any foreign insurance policy automatically terminates after crossing the Ukrainian border due to the martial law imposed in the country. You can purchase insurance covering military risks on our website. Read more about the benefits of this type of insurance policy here.


We remind you! The incredible beauty of Ukrainian nature attracts thousands of foreign tourists despite the security situation in the country. Read whether it is worth traveling to Ukraine now and how much such a trip will cost in our previous article.


Photo: skyscrapercity.com


Want to know more? Read the latest news and useful materials about Ukraine and the world in the News section.




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