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03 Okt. 2022

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Entry of foreigners to Ukraine in wartime: an interview with a representative of the Border Service

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Entry of foreigners to Ukraine in wartime: an interview with a representative of the Border Service

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Recently, there has been a rapid increase in the number of foreigners entering Ukraine. We decided to ask the spokesman of the State Border Service of Ukraine Andrii Demchenko about the number of foreigners who have visited our country since the beginning of 2022 and what makes them go to Ukraine in war conditions:


- How did the passenger and transport flow change in 2022?


In general, this year is radically different from the previous ones and, of course, this is primarily due to the war, which also affected the passenger and transport flow.


- Which checkpoints are currently working?


Since the beginning of the war, Ukrainian checkpoints on the border with Russia, Belarus and on the Transnistrian segment on the border with Moldova stopped working. That is, from February 24, only checkpoints on the borders with European countries and certain checkpoints on the border with Moldova will function.


- Citizens of which countries go to Ukraine most often? At the beginning of the war and now.


In January-February, 825,000 foreigners entered Ukraine. For the next 2 months (March, April) – 280,000 and during May-August – 710,000 people. Citizens of Hungary, Romania, Poland and Moldova predominate, with more than 100,000 representatives from each of these countries. A little less came from Belarus, the USA, Turkey, Lithuania, Great Britain, Germany, Slovakia, and the Czech Republic.


- How many people have been refused entry since the beginning of the war? What are the main reasons for rejection?


In six months, 6,560 people were refused entry to Ukraine. Reasons: unconfirmed purpose of the trip, lack of a visa, restrictions on entry to Ukraine, invalid document or overstayed previous stay in Ukraine.


- For what purpose do foreigners seek to enter? Is it only volunteering, journalists, official delegations, or is it a private or maybe even a tourist goal?


Regarding the purpose of the foreigner's trip to Ukraine - during the procedures for registration of arrival, Ukrainian military personnel check the conditions of entry, including the purpose of the trip, but such data are not published. Although it can be said that the vast majority of foreigners come to Ukraine on private visits.


- Russians - are there any who managed to get a visa? Were there such citizens of Russia who arrived at the border and asked for asylum in Ukraine?


As for citizens of the Russian Federation, only the Ministry of Foreign Affairs can provide data on the number of Russians who have received a Ukrainian visa, as they are responsible for visa policy and visa issuance.

The State Border Service is involved at the stage of verification of persons when they submit documents to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Border guards check whether such citizens pose a threat to Ukraine. There is no data on whether any of the citizens of the Russian Federation came to Ukraine with a visa, but the probability of such visits is very low.

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