1,700 refugee applications were submitted to the Office in the first six months of 2021, 27 percent more than in the same period of 2020, spokesman Jakub Dudziak told reporters on Saturday.
According to UdSC data, Belarusians filed 667 applications, Russians 465, Afghans 140, Ukrainians 112 and Turks 50.
“In total, in the first half of this year, international protection was granted to 391 foreigners,” Dudziak said.
International protection is given as either refugee status or subsidiary protection. The relevant applications are considered case by case by the UdSC.
“A foreigner is granted international protection if in his or her country of origin they face persecution or a real threat to their life or health. They were mainly citizens of Belarus, Russia and Turkey,” he added
Dudziak noted that in the case of Belarusians the approval rate was 100 percent in comparison with the average approval rate of 39 percent.
Belarus has been gripped by mass protests against strongman Alexander Lukashenko for almost a year. Hundreds of his opponents have been detained and thousands exiled. Lukashenko, who has ruled Belarus for 25 years, claims to have won a presidential election last summer, but his critics and the West say the vote was rigged.
Source: PAP, IAR