It’s a new all time low for the Russian Migration Service. In 2017, refugee certificates were given to 33 people, in 2016, to 39 people.
According to the Federal State Statistics Service data, as of January 1, 2019, Russia had 572 registered refugees, 20 people fewer than a year ago (592 refugees as of January 1, 2018). The smaller number is largely due to the decrease in Ukrainian refugees in the fourth quarter of last year; the number of Ukrainians with refugee certificates went from 158 down to 140 between October 1, 2018, and January 1, 2019.
By the end of 2018, the total number of registered asylum seekers in Russia dropped by almost 40%, from 125,000 to 76,000 (last year between January 1, 2017 and January 1, 2018 the total number of registered asylum seekers reduced by half.) The change in this case was also connected, to a great extent, with the Ukrainian citizens whose population decreased by 48 thousand people, from 123,000 to 75,000. It is possible that they have changed their status and became Russian citizens. According to Russia’s Ministry of Internal Affairs, 83,000 Ukrainian citizens received Russian passports.
Moreover, the number of Syrians with asylum-seeker’s certificates significantly changed by almost one third between January 1, 2018 and January 1, 2019 – from 1,128 to 826. It’s the lowest value since 2012. In general, the number of people granted temporary asylum decreased by 20% (1 819 people) within a year, with the exception of Ukrainian citizens. There is one positive trend worth mentioning, the number of Afghan refugees granted temporary asylum grew from 356 to 484 people. In 2018, the number of temporarily displaced persons also went down from 13,795 to 9,485.
Translated by Elena Fedyushkina