The first Ukrainian family fleeing the war triggered after the Russian Federation’s invasion landed at Ezeiza International Airport last Tuesday – a woman with her nine-year-old son and his grandmother.
Her husband had to stay behind in Ukraine, in compliance with the regulations prohibiting men aged between 18 and 60 from leaving the country.
The family, whose names remain confidential, did not arrive as asylum-seekers, but after being contacted by one of the Ukrainian communities in Argentina. Thus they have arranged for a family in Buenos Aires Province to accommodate them.
No formal request for asylum has been filed as yet.
According to the information made available to Perfil, the woman, her mother and son all left Ukraine via Poland. They stayed in the Netherlands while awaiting their departure to Argentina to find refuge for the duration of the invasion. They arrived in the morning, on a flight from Amsterdam.
According to official sources, the arrival of the relative of a Ukrainian Embassy employee in Argentina has also been confirmed, while 86 Argentines in total have left Ukraine since the outbreak of war.
The Ukrainian community in Argentina is the seventh-largest in the world. Statistics estimate it includes 350,000 to 400,000 people. Therefore, the news of Ukrainians fleeing the war to seek refuge in this country is expected to be increasingly repeated.
Earlier this week, the UNHCR (United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees) increased the number of Ukrainians fleeing their country to two million as from February 24, when Vladimir Putin gave the order to start the invasion. Analysts believe the figure, which has already been climbing, could rise to four or five million.
In this context, the Immigration Department (DNM, in its Spanish acronym) issued a resolution, published last Tuesday in the Official Gazette, authorising the entry and leave to remain for humanitarian reasons by Ukrainian citizens and their direct relatives, whatever their nationality.
This resolution of the DNM, headed by Florencia Carignano, affords the status of temporary protection, permitting beneficiaries to remain up to three years, after which they may apply for and be granted permanent residence in Argentina.
As detailed by the Interior Ministry, the visa conforms to the Migration Act (Law No. 25,871) specifically Article 23M, which deems temporary residents for humanitarian reasons as those entering the country while invoking “any grounds warranting special treatment at the discretion of the Immigration Department.”
This Department highlighted the aim of this measure as “providing protection to people who, while not being refugees or asylum-seekers, cannot momentarily stay in or return to their countries,” and explained that beneficiaries will be exempt from immigration taxes, given the crisis affecting Ukraine.