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What special rules have Norway put in place to help refugees from Ukraine? 

Frazer Norwell
Frazer Norwell - [email protected]
What special rules have Norway put in place to help refugees from Ukraine? 
The Norwegian government has done a number of things to help refugees from Ukraine. Pictured: Refugees wait for a transportation train after crossing the Ukrainian border into Poland, at the Medyka border crossing, southeastern Poland on March 10, 2022. - Photo by Louisa Gouliamaki / AFP.

The Norwegian government has introduced several measures to help Ukrainians fleeing war in their homeland.


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More than 2.5 million Ukrainians have fled following Russia's invasion of Ukraine, according to figures from the UN.

The sheer number of refugees fleeing the country has been called the fastest-growing refugee crisis since World War Two by the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR).

Countries across Europe have been working to make sure they have the capacity to take in asylum seekers fleeing the war and devastation in Ukraine.

Norway is no different and is working to establish around 8,000 emergency accommodation places for refugees from Ukraine. The places include a mixture of reception centres for refugees and hotel rooms.

The country has also implemented a number of measures to try and help Ukrainian refugees.

The most significant of these measures is the introduction of temporary collective protection for Ukrainians.

Typically, each asylum application is assessed individually, based on the specifics of the applicant's situation. However, collective protection grants asylum to an entire group of people, in this case, Ukrainians. The last time the government did this was in the 1990s for those fleeing from Kosovo.

The temporary collective protection is expected to take effect from Friday March 11th. You will need to arrive at the Norwegian border before applying for asylum in Norway.


The Norwegian Directorate of Immigration (UDI) has also allowed Ukrainian citizens in Norway to stay in the country until further notice, even if their residence permits or visas have expired.

Ukrainians with biometric passports, also called an ePassport, which has an embedded microchip that holds one's personal information, are able to travel to Norway without needing a visa. Biometric passports are identifiable by the small gold camera logo at the bottom of the document.

If you do not have a biometric passport, you will need to have a visa, residence permit or residence card for Norway to enter the country legally. If you are going to apply for a visa or residence permit to enter Norway legally, you will need to do so at the Norwegian Embassy in Ankara, Turkey. The application centre in Ukraine is closed.

However, because of the crisis in Ukraine, the UDI has suspended deportations to the country until further notice, meaning illegal arrivals will be able to stay for the foreseeable future and not be sent back to Ukraine.

The government has also said that it is looking into the possibility of allowing Ukrainian refugees to stay with relatives in Norway without losing the right to financial support.  

Under current rules, asylum seekers risk missing out on financial support from the government if they choose to live in a private residence or with family rather than at a reception centre.


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