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Home NATIONALNumber of Ukrainian asylum seekers on rise
Fri, 05 Sep, 2014 12:01:18 AM
Most of 50 decisions get negative results so far
FTimes-STT Report, Sept 5
Refugees wait to receive free food from the local branch of the Ukrainian Red Cross in Mariupol on September 3, 2014. Photo – AFP / Lehtikuva.
The number of Ukrainians applying for asylum in the country has skyrocketed following the Ukraine crisis.
The Finnish Immigration Service said more than 190 Ukrainians had applied for asylum till the end of August. This reflects a sharp rise as the number of asylum seekers from Ukraine last year was only five.
The number of applicants increased especially during the summer.
So far this year Ukrainians are the largest group of asylum applicants in the country.
The immigration service has already processed as many as 50 applications. Nearly all the applications however have been turned down. 
According to the immigration service, the applications often are based on the situation in eastern Ukraine which alone does not justify issuance of a residence permit.
Most of the asylums seekers in the recent years have come from Iraq with the third largest group coming from Somalia.
Earlier, on August 5, news Agency Xinhua reported that the Estonian authorities reported increased asylum applications from Ukrainian citizens.    
Maiga Lepp from the Estonian migration office told local media that some 20 asylum applications had been made by Ukrainian citizens since the start of the security crisis in the country late last year.    
File Photo AFP-Lehtikuva.
For comparison, there were only a few such applications before the crisis in Ukraine. 
The authorities said most applicants hailed from the regions of Luhansk, Donetsk and Crimea. In many cases, the Ukrainian citizens had friends and relatives in Estonia.    
According to official statistics, Ukrainians are the third largest group in Estonia after native Estonians and Russians.    
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