The United State will accept 100,000 Ukrainian refugees, the New York Times reported. Washington will also donate $1 billion to help European countries manage Ukrainian refugees in their countries.
One month after Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine, more than 3.6 million Ukrainians have left their country. The latest data from the UN’s refugee agency show nearly 2.2 million have arrived in Poland, more than 560,000 have sought sanctuary in Romania, more than 330,000 have been admitted to Hungary, and Moldova has taken 374,000. 271,254 have left Ukraine for Russia.
A further 6.5 million Ukrainians are internally displaced by the war but have not left Ukraine, according to the International Organization for Migration.
“The scale of human suffering and forced displacement due to the war far exceeds any worst-case scenario planning,” IoM Director General Antonio Vitorino said.
The vast majority of Ukrainian refugees are women and child, as men ages 18 to 60 have been ordered to remain in Ukraine to join the fight against Russia.
It is unclear which legal mechanism will be used for the US to allow 100,000 Ukrainian refugees. Standard processing time for refugee applications is more than one year, and for Ukrainians, time is of the essence.
Months after the Red Army entered Budapest in 1956 to quell the uprising in Hungary, the US took in more than 30,000 Hungarian refugees using a special immigration quota. Something similar could potentially be done for Ukrainians, but such a measure would be time-consuming, as it would require a lengthy bureaucratic process to set up the program.
A more likely scenario is that the US Department of Homeland Security will set up a parole system designed for urgent humanitarian reasons, as it did for tens of thousands of Afghans who fled the Taliban last summer. Individuals who receive parole under certain circumstances are allowed to stay in the US for two years.
The Biden administration has already allowed the 75,000 Ukrainian citizens who are currently in the United States to stay for at least the next two years. All have been given work permits, regardless of immigration status.