At least 71,000 Ukrainians have entered the United States since March, with Joe Biden’s pledge to welcome 100,000 people fleeing the Russian invasion on track to be received over the summer.
According Department of Homeland Security (DHS) data reported by NBC. Another 23,000 people have been approved but have yet to make the trip; travel arrangements are the responsibility of Ukrainians or their sponsors.
Since the program launched in April, sponsors – including friends, relatives, NGOs and religious groups – have applied online to support more than 60,000 Ukrainians seeking to enter the country. There are about 1,400 new online applications to sponsor Ukrainians, according to to a breakdown of the numbers by the Washington Post.
The United States has become an increasingly hostile environment for many migrants and refugees in recent years, but Ukrainians have been largely welcomed without controversy.
At least 12 million Ukrainians have been displaced so far, according to the UN. Of these, nearly 5.3 million have sought refuge in countries in Europe, including 1.8 million in the Russian Federation, 1.2 million in Poland, 780,000 in Germany and 120,000 in Spain. About 7 million Ukrainians are believed to be moved within the country.
With so many people fleeing and little sign of Putin’s war machine slowing down, the Biden administration will likely face pressure to lift the cap on Ukrainians allowed into the United States.
While the number of Ukrainians arriving through the citizen sponsorship program is increasing, the majority of those who have arrived in the United States to date have come using existing visas or crossing the southern border between Mexico and the United States. United States.
At the southern border, nearly 24,000 Ukrainians were expedited to the United States at land crossings like Tijuana from March to May, according to Customs and Border Protection (CBP) data.
Since then, Ukrainians have been subject to the same land border restrictions imposed on tens of thousands of Mexicans and Central Americans, who have been widely barred from seeking asylum due to the controversial Title 42 order that was in place – and used selectively – since the beginning of the pandemic.