Von der Leyen: European Union Will Repay Slovakia’s Aid for Ukrainians

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European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen (stock photo by TASR/AP)

Bratislava, March 3 (TASR) – The European Union (EU) will compensate Slovakia for its help provided to refugees, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and Prime Minister Eduard Heger (OLaNO) said following their joint meeting in Bratislava on Thursday.
According to von der Leyen, the European Union wants to provide aid totalling €500 million to the countries bordering Ukraine.


“The question of how much money Slovakia will receive is not on the table because solidarity is complete. It isn’t about percentages. Every country wants to help as much as possible,” said the premier, adding that the package of money is ready, and it’ll be bigger, if necessary. He pointed out that we can talk about 100% reimbursement.

Regarding the humanitarian aid, von der Leyen said that humanitarian corridors need to be created so that humanitarian convoys can cross safely and Ukrainians could leave safely. “For this reason, the Russians must allow us to provide humanitarian aid to the people on the spot,” she said.

The EC president stated that the EU is proposing a temporary protection mechanism for refugees. Everyone will be given the right to reside in the EU for one year which can be automatically extended to two years. They’ll be able to get jobs, put their children in school, get medical help. “You’re an example of how you’ve already done this in national legislation. We’re doing the same at the European level so that all refugees are immediately welcomed here,” she said.

Von der Leyen also pointed out that Europe has enough gas to survive this winter. The EU is communicating with other countries on the supply of compressed gas. “We have the necessary network all over Europe. We can send gas where it is needed,” she said, adding that Slovakia would also be supported if necessary.