Special programs from the EU for emigrated Russian opponents of the war in Ukraine

The European Union creates special emigration programs for Russian citizens who do not approve of Russia’s military invasion of Ukraine and were forced to leave the country.

As writes bb.lv, citing the candidate of political sciences, an expert on Central and Eastern Europe, an observer for a number of media Ivan Preobrazhensky, they are probably not yet perfect and insufficient. However, this is the first step in the right direction.

Germany offers protection in its own country to Russians who are subjected to persecution and threats in their homeland. To this end, the government has adopted a special decision that applies to lawyers, journalists, human rights activists and employees of those organizations who have been labeled “foreign agents.” The Czech Republic has already adopted a similar program on May 18. The predictable reaction of the Russian authorities demonstrates that the measures are important, timely and not superfluous at all.

For more than three months, after the start of the war in Ukraine, opponents of their country’s aggression have been leaving Russia. Among them are those who at first tried to somehow fight after the decision of their president, and those who were under repression even before the “special operation”. Because their freedom was under threat, hundreds of thousands of Russians decided to leave their homeland (according to some sources, there are several million of them).

Many Western countries have no doubt that these people need support, and have been trying for a long time to figure out how this can be done. And now, when the fourth month of the war has begun, “the ice has broken.” Concrete programs began to emerge and take effect. However, the delay with them is fully justified, and the Russian oppositionists understand this. Flight from Russia is not an escape from war and bombing, so at the beginning of the war, the main focus was on Ukrainian refugees.

However, the citizens of Russia do not pretend to be treated as refugees. They do not need either the status of a political refugee, which must be expected for months and years, or benefits or any benefits. All they want is legalization. Judging by the latest statements, this is what Germany is ready to offer them.

Already now from Russia to the countries EU Russian opposition media and civil society structures are moving. And emigrants would like to be able to quickly resume their activities. These people need work visas and residence permits, as the FRG suggests. Further, they, in most cases, are able to provide for themselves. Germany and the Czech Republic are already working in this direction, while at the same time having opponents.

The first are those who consider the measures taken reasonable, but insufficient. Not all bureaucratic obstacles are removed. In addition, the criteria for selecting “worthy” ones are not entirely clear, and they are afraid that the term “good Russians” will come up again. It is also unclear how those who have arrived and received visas will be given access to the labor market. And a host of other equally important technical questions that need to be answered.

The second group is those who are sure that after the new war unleashed by Russia in Europe there should be no citizens of the aggressor country in the European Union. Special programs? Deprive residence permits even of those who have been living here for a long time!

There is also a directly opposite position: to provide an opportunity for entry to all Russians who want to move to Europe. That is, the very fact of emigration confirms the protest against the war and Putin’s policy. It is proposed to help such people in every possible way, regardless of who they were in their homeland – independent journalists, officials, human rights activists, etc. So do many Russians.

However, the criticism does not seem entirely fair. Germany cannot accept Russian citizens, while forgetting about the population of its own country. She is struggling to cope with the influx of Ukrainian refugees in need of protection, and at the same time she cannot act inhumanely.

Some may not believe in the persecution of the opposition and the danger that threatens them in Russia. For them – another statement by Dmitry Medvedev, ex-president and ex-premier:

“Let such people go to the Germans as soon as possible. And preferably irrevocably, under pain of criminal liability for fakes about the armed forces.”

As you can see, he honestly promises to imprison those who disagree. And this is the main argument why emigrants from Russia are entitled to the support of Europeans, writes bb.lv.

Yesterday the German government announced, which will allow almost 70 Russian dissidents to stay in Germany for permanent residence. This was reported on Monday June 6 by Der Spiegel, citing government sources. Critical Russian journalists who fled to Germany after the start of Russian aggression in Ukraine with a three-month Schengen visa will be able to stay here for permanent residence and work: their short-term visas will be reissued into long-term ones.

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