At least 1,529 Ukrainians left Portugal in the last year

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At least 1,529 Ukrainians who obtained temporary protection due to the war left Portugal last year, representing 2.6% of the total number of refugees who requested this support from the country, SEF data sent to Lusa reveal.

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https://visao.sapo.pt/atualidade/sociedade/2023-02-06-pelo-menos-1-529-ucranianos-deixaram-portugal-no-ultimo-ano/

Since the beginning of the war in Ukraine on February 24, Portugal has so far granted 57,626 temporary protections to Ukrainians or foreigners living in that country, according to the Foreigners and Borders Service (SEF).

In a response sent to the Lusa agency, SEF indicates that 1,529 Ukrainian citizens have requested the cancellation of temporary protection requests that they formalized with SEF.

That security service states that, of the 57,626 temporary protections, 33,696 were granted to women and 23,930 to men, with the highest number in Lisbon (12,330), Cascais (3,626), Porto (2,932), Sintra (1,950), and Albufeira (1,426).

SEF also indicates that it has issued 47,377 certificates granting a residence permit under the temporary protection regime, a document that contains the user numbers of the National Health Service, social security and tax identification and is necessary for refugees to start working and access support.

That security service adds that requests for temporary protection were authorized for 14,082 minors, representing about 25% of the total.

SEF also reveals that it has communicated to the Public Prosecutor’s Office (MP) the situation of 737 Ukrainian minors who arrived in Portugal without their parents or legal representatives, cases in which there is considered to be no “current or imminent danger.

In these situations – in most cases the child arrived in Portugal with a relative – the case is communicated to the Public Prosecutor’s Office for the appointment of a legal representative and the possible promotion of a protection procedure for the minor.

SEF has also communicated to the Commission for the Protection of Children and Young People the situation of 15 minors who arrived in Portugal with someone other than their parents or proven legal representative, these cases representing “current or imminent danger”.

The request for temporary protection in Portugal can be made through the online platform created by the SEF (https://sefforukraine.sef.pt), available in three languages, without the need for adults to go to the security service’s branches.

However, in the case of minors, it is mandatory to go to a counter of the Foreigners and Borders Service to have their identity and filiation confirmed.

The temporary protections automatically granted in Portugal to Ukrainian refugees are valid for one year and can be extended twice for a period of six months.

The military offensive launched on February 24, 2022 by Russia in Ukraine has so far caused the flight of more than 14 million people – 6.5 million internally displaced and more than eight million to European countries – according to the latest data from the UN, which ranks this refugee crisis as the worst in Europe since World War II (1939-1945).

Right now, 17.7 million Ukrainians need humanitarian aid and 9.3 million need food aid and housing.

The Russian invasion – justified by Russian President Vladimir Putin with the need to “denazify” and demilitarize Ukraine for Russia’s security – has been condemned by the international community in general, which has responded by sending arms to Ukraine and imposing political and economic sanctions on Russia.

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