Scotland temporarily suspends the reception of Ukrainian refugees
Scotland temporarily suspends the sponsorship scheme for Ukrainian refugees for three months, The Guardian reports. The country's government says that the pause is caused by a lack of proper housing and that they need to "ensure safety and support" to the displaced people who have already arrived. It is reported that the Scottish authorities have already submitted a request to the British government to reject all visa applications in which Ukrainians choose Scotland as their super-sponsor.
We will remind that, unlike the EU, Britain did not introduce a mechanism of temporary protection for Ukrainians. Instead, the British government introduced the Homes for Ukraine scheme, under which Ukrainians can immigrate to the country if they find a sponsor - a citizen of the United Kingdom, ready to provide their housing to refugees for free. In the case of Wales and Scotland, local governments act as super-sponsors themselves and are engaged in finding housing for displaced people.
In the coming months, the Scottish government expects to accept another 18,000 refugees who have already been granted visas. This means that the country has issued more visas per capita than England, Wales and Northern Ireland. If the issuing of visas is not suspended now, the local government says, the authorities will have to resort to "extraordinary measures, which do not correspond to a warm Scottish welcome". In particular, the Scottish authorities have already started booking hotels, student campuses and even a passenger liner for the needs of refugees.
Earlier, Wales also announced the suspension of participation in the sponsorship program. This means that currently citizens of Ukraine can take advantage of the British sponsorship scheme only by finding an individual sponsor who is ready to provide their own housing. In Scotland, however, they note that the 18,000 immigrants who have already received a visa should not worry - the country will accept them, as promised, and only new applications for a British visa will be rejected.
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