Currently, getting political asylum in Germany is not easy for people fleeing military mobilization in Russia. A Berlin-based NGO is calling on the government to ease conditions for those who do not want to serve in the Russian Army.
Hundreds of thousands of Russians have fled their country in the wake of Vladimir Putin’s announcement of the partial military mobilization. But what awaits them if they come to Germany, or somewhere else in the EU?
Since a partial mobilisation was announced in Russia on September 21, some 260,000 Russians have fled their country to avoid being called up to fight in Ukraine, according to the Russian newspaper Novaya Gazeta.
When the war began, Ukrainian authorities stopped extending Russian citizens' residency permits. Since then, their status has become unclear and many face deportation.
The Ukrainian president has promised to protect Russian soldiers who voluntarily surrender. Meanwhile, pro-Russian authorities have accused Ukraine of targeting a hotel in Kherson.
German ministers have indicated that people fleeing Russia could apply for asylum in Germany after President Vladimir Putin ordered what he called a "partial military mobilization."
The current Russian military retreat from some areas of Ukraine is sparking discussion in Russia. Calls for a nationwide mobilization to bolster the armed forces are becoming louder, though that's likely very unpopular.
Moscow's war in Ukraine has left EU countries debating whether to also sanction ordinary Russians. After Finland announced plans to let far fewer Russian tourists into the country, DW visited a small Finnish border town to gauge the mood.
In May, Germany's interior ministry vowed to protect Russian anti-war activists and other dissidents fleeing the country. How many individuals have been taken in, and why are some rejected?
EU defense ministers are searching for a unified approach as to whether the bloc should ban Russian tourists. A visa agreement could be suspended.
Foreign ministers from the EU are meeting in Prague, where they will debate changing visa rules for Russian tourists. The Baltic states in particular see issuing visas to Russians as a security risk. DW's Juri Rescheto filed this report from Estonia.
Calls to stop issuing tourist visas to Russians have been growing in the European Union for weeks. While states like Estonia are determined to keep vacationers out, others, like Germany, are more reluctant to do so.