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    What is the difference between temporary and international protection?

    Temporary protection

    Who can apply for temporary protection?

    • Ukrainian citizens residing in Ukraine before February 24, 2022 and members of their families;
    • Nationals of other third countries (other than Ukraine) and stateless people who have used their right to international protection or another equivalent type of national protection in Ukraine before 24 February 2022, and members of their families;
    • Persons with foreign citizenship or statelessness who left the territory of Ukraine as a result of hostilities and entered and remained on the territory of the Republic of Bulgaria, if they explicitly state that they want to enjoy the status of temporary protection until March 31, 2022.

    How long does the process take?

    • The procedure takes 5 to 15 minutes and temporary protection is provided immediately
    • Temporary protection is granted upon oral request to the Border Police, the State Agency for Refugees or other bodies of the Ministry of Interior (migration, police), to people who meet the conditions above.

    What rights does temporary protection give me?

    • Right to stay on the territory of the Republic of Bulgaria;
    • Right to written information in plain language about the rules and conditions of temporary protection; 
    • If you are granted temporary protection, you receive: 
      – Right to registration card of a foreigner who has been granted temporary protection – for the term of protection;
      – Right to reunite with one’s family;
      – Right to work and professional training;
      – The right to education for students and the right to access kindergarten for children under 6 years of age;
      – The right to appropriate accommodation or means of accommodation if necessary;
      – Right to assistance for accommodation and meals in accommodation places registered in the National Tourist Register, in the total amount of BGN 40 without VAT per person per night and food / breakfast, lunch and dinner /, incl. tourist tax, which is paid to the service provider. The aid will be provided for a period of up to 3 months. The same rights will have the persons who have expressed a desire to access the labor market in the country and this assistance will be provided for up to 1 month from the date of application. The period of validity of the program is expected to be from 24.02.2022 to 31.05.2022.
    • Right to social assistance;
    • Right to medical care in emergencies
      – People from vulnerable groups – children under 18, unaccompanied children, pregnant women, single parents with minors, the elderly and people with disabilities, serious health problems, mental disorders victims of trafficking or suffering torture, rape or other severe forms of violence – have the right to full medical care as Bulgarian citizens. 

    International protection

    Who can apply for international protection?

    • Every person from any country has the right to seek asylum (international protection) in Bulgaria when he is persecuted or when his life or safety is threatened.
    • You are an asylum seeker from the moment you apply for protection. From now on you have the right to stay in Bulgaria until a final decision is made on your application. 

    How long does the process take?

    • The procedure can take from 2 to 21 months;
    • International protection is granted after submitting a written application to the Border Police, the State Agency for Refugees or other bodies of the Ministry of Interior (migration, police);
    • The process is long and complicated, requires a thorough examination of documents, facts, allegations and circumstances, a series of interviews and inspections and the procedure can take up to 21 months and end with a “refusal” or granting status (humanitarian or refugee).

    What rights does international protection give me?

    • Right to stay on the territory of the Republic of Bulgaria;
    • Right to written information in plain language on the terms and conditions of international protection;
    • If you are granted subsidiary protection (humanitarian status), you receive:
      – Right to a card of a foreigner with humanitarian status, which is valid for 3 years;
      – You will have the rights and obligations of a foreigner with a permanent residence permit in Bulgaria. These include the right to: 
      1. Employment without special permission
      2. Education in public schools and universities
      3. Right to reunite with your family 
      4.Bulgarian citizenship after 5 years 
      5. Travel abroad – You may be asked to provide proof of your health insurance and financial support during the time planned for your stay abroad.

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