Ukrainian-Hungarian border crossings and Hungarian missions are at full capacity, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade announced on his Facebook page on Friday. After the Russian attack on Ukraine, thousands of people are leaving Ukraine and its capital Kyiv. Near the Hungarian border, pictures show long lines of cars. The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) estimates that four million people could flee Ukraine to other countries, and Hungary has offered to help. According to press reports, conscripted men can cross the Ukrainian border with a Hungarian passport and a special stamp.
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“Contacts with the Hungarian missions and the Hungarian Cultural Association in the Carpathian Foothills are ongoing,” stressed the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Péter Szijjártó, in a Facebook video. He also said that the border crossings are open continuously at all five border crossing points and that the border crossing points in Barabas and Lonja, which are in operation for a limited period of time, are now available for a longer period of time given the circumstances.
Nevertheless, the waiting times are considerable, with queues of 3-5 kilometers on the Ukrainian side.”
According to reports, the waiting time at the border can be up to 15 hours.
Masses of people, including families and young men who do not want to participate in the war, have left Russia-invaded Ukraine.
Meanwhile, the UNHCR has estimated that if the conflict escalates further, four million people could flee Ukraine for other countries, among them Hungary, who has offered help.
Men can only cross the Ukrainian border with a Hungarian passport and stamp.
24.hu reports that men between the ages of 18 and 60 have been banned from leaving Ukraine. A 444 article clarifies that in order to avoid military service, those Hungarians from the Carpathian foothills can continue to enter Hungary who have a Hungarian passport with an entry stamp, i.e. who have already entered Ukraine at least once with this document.
The situation of those who wanted to cross with their animals from Ukraine is also clarified
According to reports, many people did not want to leave Ukraine because of their pets, as any pet needs a passport to leave the country.
According to the Ministry of Agriculture, Lajos Bognár, the country’s chief veterinarian, immediately started consultations on the situation of farm animals waiting at the Ukrainian-Hungarian border. Currently, Hungary is also applying the exemption introduced by other countries bordering Ukraine to support the entry of animals arriving with their owners, the Association of Animal Protection Defenders and Professionals stated on Facebook.
The Hungarian veterinary authority is prepared for the arrival of pets that do not meet the current veterinary standards (no microchip, not vaccinated, no blood tests). In order to ensure a smooth entry, the General Veterinarian has ordered the completion of a simplified registration form.”
It was noted that few animals in Ukraine have the strict documents required to cross the border, which can take weeks to clear. Therefore, they have asked the Ministerial Representative for Animal Welfare, Péter Ovádi, for help in releasing the official entry protocol for privately owned animals arriving in the emergency situation.
Featured image: Queues of waiting cars at the Polish-Ukrainian border in Hruszów on 25 February 2022. Photo by Karina Sao/MTI/EPA/PAP