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UNHCR: Two-thirds of Ukrainian refugees plan to stay in their host countries for now

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Around two-thirds of refugees from Ukraine expect to stay in their host countries until hostilities subside and the security situation improves after Russia’s invasion, a survey by the United Nations refugee agency UNHCR has found.

Most of the refugees from Ukraine, mainly women and children, hope to return home eventually, according to the survey of around 4,900 people from Ukraine now living in the Czech Republic, Hungary, Moldova, Poland, Romania and Slovakia.

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The survey was conducted between mid-May and mid-June.

UNHCR says that 5.6 million refugees are now recorded across Europe, with nearly 8.8 million people crossing out of Ukraine and nearly 3.3 million crossing back in since the Russian invasion on February 24.

“They are anxious to reunite with friends and family and worry about those who stayed behind. Most want to wait until hostilities have subsided,” the report released on Wednesday said.

Of those seeking to return, 40 percent planned to do so in the next month, said UNHCR, adding that a higher proportion of refugees from the capital Kyiv and areas in the west were planning to return than those who arrived from the east and north.

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