ATHENS – The Greek Forum of Refugees on Wednesday said that it is getting phone calls every five minutes from Ukrainian citizens seeking help for themselves or their families, who have been impacted by the war in Ukraine.
They ask for information about how a Ukrainian can ask for asylum in Greece, but also how refugees who have arrived in Greece in the last days or were on holiday in the country before the Russian invasion and are now stranded here can find shelter and food. Even Ukrainians who have found temporary shelter with relatives are anxious about the next day, about where they will stay and how they will survive here if the war lasts for a long time. There are also frequent phone calls from refugees and migrants of other nationalities who, having experienced a similar uprooting, want to help by volunteering or sending humanitarian aid to Ukraine.
The Greek Forum of Refugees, a network of about 40 migrant organisations, is currently attempting to map out the requests received by the forum and its Ukrainian member-communities on a daily basis. As the director of the Forum, Andla Sasati, explained to the Athens-Macedonian News Agency (ANA), this mapping has shown that in the first phase “there is a need for Greece to provide a safe passage to all those who want to leave Ukraine to protect themselves from the horrors of war.” The Forum also noted the need for a visa waiver for Ukrainians staying in the country for more than 90 days and for the Greek state to further facilitate both the renewal of residence permits for those staying in Greece and the application process for family reunion.