Updates: 18.05.2022 12:50
Released: 18.05.2022, 12:50
Prague – The Prague City Hall will not close the Assistance Center for Ukrainian Refugees (KACPU) in Vysočany at least until the end of May. At the same time, volunteer assistance at the main station will end at the end of the month. Mayor Zdeněk Hřib (Pirates) told the press after the meeting of the municipal crisis staff. The mayor said last week that if the government does not prepare a system for redistributing refugees to other regions, Prague will have to close the assistance center. The center, which serves Prague and the Central Bohemian Region, has handled about 90,000 people since the beginning of the Russian invasion.
“We thank the government for starting to solve the problem of the capital. The measures presented to the governors are clearly seen as a signal of the government that it wants to solve the situation. We understand that it will not happen overnight, so the conclusion of the crisis staff is that we will not conclude assistance center until the end of the negotiations, which must take place, but no later than May 31, “said Hřib.
After the deadline, the city will evaluate the situation and decide on further action. Until then, he wants the government to have a timetable for resolving the situation. Hřib will negotiate with other governors about the method of transferring refugees from Prague to other regions within the discussion of the Association of Regions of the Czech Republic. According to Hřiba, the personal involvement of Prime Minister Petr Fiala (ODS) is necessary to solve the problems.
Volunteer assistance at the main station will end at the end of May. According to the mayor, it has developed into a form that was not originally intended. It was only supposed to be an information kiosk. Based on a meeting with non-profit organizations, fire brigade or police, the assistance will be terminated at the main station. “We want it to be somehow controlled and there will be no confusion,” Hrib said. Hundreds of refugees reside at the main railway station, mostly Roma, for whom it is not clear whether they are entitled to temporary protection. Some of them have Hungarian citizenship.
According to Hřiba, it is necessary for the solution to solve the situation that the aid works on two levels. The first is for refugees to start accommodating refugees in other facilities through the tent city and to become only a “waiting room”. The state must take care of follow-up accommodation. The second step is to ensure that people who have dual citizenship and are not entitled to housing in the Czech Republic can go to their homeland. “Because we are not able to provide me with support,” Hřib added.
The director of the Prague fire brigade, Luděk Prudil, said that KACPU was checked in by 664 people on Monday and 450 people on Tuesday. “The number is gradually decreasing, but we are gradually getting to the number of 90,000 refugees handled since the beginning of the war,” he said. There were 150 refugees in the tent city of Troy at midnight from Tuesday to today. About 20 of them are being transported to alternative accommodation.