The government approved a proposal to extend the state of emergency from early April to May 31 at a meeting on Wednesday. The plan deviates from current practice where the government asks the Chamber of Deputies to regularly extend the state of emergency after 30 days.
The Cabinet has so far declared a state of emergency on March 4 for 30 days. According to the Constitutional Law on the Security of the Czech Republic, a state of emergency can be declared by the government for a maximum of 30 days. According to the regulations, this period can only be extended with the prior approval of the Chamber of Deputies. According to the cabinet of Petr Fiala (ODS), it is clear that the situation with refugees from Ukraine will not improve by the end of May. In defense of the plan, Deputy Prime Minister Vít Rakušan (STAN) also stated that the cabinet did not want to go through the Chamber of Deputies and did not ask for blank checks. According to the Austrian man, the proposal was a compromise. As head of the crisis center staff, he proposed three months, according to him, the armed forces have an idea much longer.
Although the government’s proposal resolution states a request to the Chamber of Deputies to approve an extension of the state of emergency until May 31, the filing report still states July 3. “If the state of emergency is not extended, the processes related to providing emergency accommodation for refugees carried out through the regional assistance center for Ukraine will cease to function,” the material reads. In addition, according to the government, it is impossible to purchase goods operatively to ensure the basic living needs of refugees and to provide humanitarian assistance to Ukraine.
The government also said that without a state of emergency, the number of people living in conditions unsuitable for long-term accommodation would increase. “Therefore, it cannot be ruled out that there may be an increase in crime in the affected areas,” the material said.
According to the filing report, the cabinet only used the part of the authorization that provided for the emergency. That doesn’t hinder their expansion. “The crucial problem is the lack of suitable accommodation capacity,” the material said.
Constitutional lawyers disagreed whether the government’s request to extend the state of emergency by more than 30 days would comply with regulations. The government has not yet negotiated a proposal to extend the state of emergency with the opposition. The chairman of the ANO club, Alena Schillerová, told TK that ANO was ready to support a 30-day extension, and would not recommend members of the movement to vote for three months. He reiterated that YES would like to hear from the cabinet on short- and long-term strategies to address the refugee crisis in the areas of security, education, housing, employment, social affairs or health. “Let (the government) come after 30 days and ask and maybe get it back from the YES movement. It depends on the circumstances, we don’t know how it develops. We are ready to be open,” Schiller said.
SPD chairman Tomio Okamura reiterated the movement’s position against the state of emergency. “All actions can be resolved through existing crisis laws,” he wrote to TK. “The state of emergency allows the government to book accommodation and purchase refugees without a tender,” he added.
Millions fled Ukraine, and Europe experienced the fastest refugee wave since World War II
To date, more than three and a half million people, mostly women and children, had left Ukraine before the Russian invasion. The majority of them went to Poland, which was registered on its territory according to UNHCR more than two million Ukrainians.
In Europe, this is the fastest refugee crisis since World War II. According to server Security said Filippo Grandi, Commissioner of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.
Many countries have opened their borders to refugees. More than 300,000 people from Ukraine came to the Czech Republic in the first month of the Russian invasion, and the country passed laws to make it easier for them to access jobs, health insurance, and studies.
In Germany too, refugees from Ukraine will soon receive residence and work permits, and Ukrainian children can start school immediately. Denmark has also passed a law that would allow refugees from Ukraine to start work, go to school and receive social benefits, immediately upon arrival.
Similarly, Poland will allow refugees from Ukraine to work legally or obtain social and health insurance. However, some countries, such as Hungary, are still rethinking their approach to the Ukrainian people and will devise plans to address the potential increase in migration.
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