Bulgaria will again try to House Ukrainian Refugees in State Resorts (UPDATED)
The caretaker cabinet decided: Ukrainian refugees will again be accommodated in state resorts
Bulgaria will continue the program for the accommodation of Ukrainian refugees, and they will again be moved to state resorts. This was stated by Interior Minister Ivan Demerdzhiev at a briefing in the Council of Ministers.
"We have foreseen the necessary places and opportunities for this. A 15-day deadline will be given until the middle of the month for people who are accommodated in hotels to be moved to suitable resorts. Only Bulgaria and two other countries - Cyprus and Ireland provide such protection for unlimited period. On the other hand, we want to make sure that in the coming winter conditions, these citizens will be accommodated in suitable places and will not have to move to harsh climatic conditions," said the minister.
The Minister of Tourism, Ilin Dimitrov, stated that the financial resources allocated by Bulgaria are significant, even compared to the other EU member states. So far, nearly BGN 523 million have been paid, of which BGN 200 million are at the expense of the budget and about BGN 300 million - under European programs and funds, he explained.
"It is important to be aware of our options. We are not leaving anyone on the street, those in need of protection will be accommodated in government resorts and their care will continue. I want to sincerely thank the hoteliers who opened their hotels in the first wave, there were ambiguities, but they nevertheless took this risk," said Dimitrov.
The minister assured that all funds to the hoteliers will be paid, and by the end of this week all undisputed payments that the state has charged until the end of September will be entered. Within 15 days, hoteliers will be able to submit complaints, and each of them will be considered.
"There are three options in which sums may not be paid - if the person has left the hotel, but continues to be registered there, the second is when he/she has started work and has not reported within a month, and the third hypothesis is when a person is accommodated in more than one hotel".
There is also a fourth problem related to meal declarations, which, however, will be solved by software, which is why Ilin Dimitrov called on hoteliers to state the financial differences in the complaints they file.
Earlier in the day:
Ukrainian refugees in Bulgaria who are accommodated in hotels are likely to be redirected to state resorts. A similar decision is expected to be taken by the office by the end of the day, according to Bulgarian media "Dnevnik". Today is the deadline for the program under which those fleeing Russia's war in Ukraine can be accommodated in hotels. Read more about it here: The Program for Ukrainian Refugees Ends Today – Protest Tomorrow in Sunny Beach
It will probably be decided that there will be a transition period of about two weeks, after which the Ukrainians will be directed to state resorts. An attempt at such a move was made at the beginning of the summer, but then volunteers, non-governmental organizations and representatives of the Ukrainian community complained about a lack of communication with the state (Kiril Petkov's government was in power back then), clarity about which exact resorts will be used and other similar problems. Subsequently, this program was extended twice, most recently by the Caretaker Cabinet.
"People are very worried again," volunteers who help the residents told "Dnevnik". They again do not have enough clarity about the state's plans, to which resorts will they be redirected, how and when exactly.
The Bulgarian Helsinki Committee (BHC) called on Friday, October 28, for the caretaker government to take a decision to avoid a humanitarian crisis. The organization also claims that there is no awareness campaign among the community, it is not known whether there will be enough places in the state resorts and where exactly they will be.
According to "Dnevnik" information, the opinion of the cabinet is to end accommodation in hotels, which was the only one of its kind in Europe. There is no word on when this will happen, but there is talk of introducing a transition period, which is likely to be around two weeks.
Bulgaria to receive additional European funds for Ukrainian refugees
Bulgaria, Poland, Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania will receive an additional total of 100 million euros for refugees from Ukraine, the European Commission announced today, as quoted by BTA.
States will have these funds to continue to care for refugees and to provide them with food, transport and temporary accommodation. It is planned that the funds will reach civil organizations and local authorities, the commission's announcement states.
The European Commission specifies that it will allocate the funds according to the results achieved, and not according to the actual costs. It adds that another 52 million euros will be provided for accommodation conditions for the refugees, for medical and psychological assistance. It is noted that Poland, Romania, Hungary, Slovakia and the Czech Republic have already received a total of 248 million euros for the same purposes.
A spokesman for the European Commission indicated today that the EU has so far provided 3.1 billion euros in military aid to Ukraine. This amount does not include support provided bilaterally by EU countries.
In response to a question about the possibility of future peace talks, the spokesperson clarified that the EU would support anyone who could influence the achievement of peace. According to him, Russian President Vladimir Putin must stop the war as soon as possible.
The Commission today called on Russia to reconsider its decision and return to the deal to export Ukrainian grain through the Black Sea. According to Brussels, Moscow's actions could lead to a deepening of the food crisis. The EU and the UN are coordinating their next decisions on this issue, the spokesman said. He specified that so far 29 million tons of goods have been transported through the so-called corridors of sympathy from and to Ukraine.
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