Ukrainian Refugees: Report from the Front Lines

Panel discussion featuring experts from both sides of the Atlantic

By CIS on May 11, 2022


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Event Summary

A panel discussion was held and sponsored jointly by the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) and the Hungarian Migration Research Institute (MRI), which examined the challenges posed by the Ukrainian refugee crisis. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine unleashed a deluge of refugees on Europe comparable in size only to the massive displacement of people at the end of World War II. Front-line countries in Europe – Poland, Slovakia, Hungary, Moldova, and Romania – opened their borders to those fleeing Ukraine, and the EU in an historic decision offered them temporary protection, including the right to work. The United States has focused on helping Ukrainians where they are in Europe, pledging up to $5 billion in humanitarian assistance. In addition, however, the Biden administration has pledged to take in 100,000 Ukrainians, granted Temporary Protected Status to those already in the U.S., and created the “Unity for Ukraine” program to allow individuals to sponsor Ukrainians who don't want to stay in the EU.

As the war rages on, and a speedy return of refugees seems less and less likely, it is time to compare the policies enacted by stakeholders and explore the different challenges faced by front-line states and destination countries. To do this, researchers from Europe and the U.S. joined with a top official from Poland involved in that nation's response to the crisis.


Jadwiga Emilewicz, Member of the Parliament of Poland and former Deputy Prime Minister: Poland

Kristof Gyorgy Veres, Andrássy National Security Fellow (CIS-MRI): Hungary and the EU

Mark Vargha, Researcher (MRI): Romania and Moldova

Nayla Rush, Senior Researcher (CIS): United States


Jadwiga Emilewicz Presentation

Kristof Gyorgy Veres Presentation

Mark Vargha Presentation

Nayla Rush Report

Date and Location:

June 15, 2022

Army Navy Club

Washington, DC