More than 97,000 refugees from Ukraine have arrived in Italy thus far. Most of them are women and children, given that Ukrainian men up to the age of 60 are required to stay in their home country.
Italy has so far welcomed 97,912 people fleeing the conflict in Ukraine, the Italian interior ministry said on Wednesday (April 20).
The refugees who have arrived so far include 50,612 women, 11,833 men and 35,467 minors. Ukraine requires men between the ages of 18 and 60 to remain in the country to be available for military service, leaving only elderly men the chance to legally flee abroad.
Most refugees headed to cities like Rome and Milan
The majority of people who arrived in Italy since the start of the Russian invasion on February 24 entered the northeast of the country, via the land border in the region of Friuli Venezia Giulia. The main destinations declared by refugees who arrive from Ukraine are the cities of Milan, Rome, Naples and Bologna, according to the interior ministry.
Meanwhile, Italian Equal Opportunities and Family Minister Elena Bonetti told a congress of labor union FIM-CISL that she was personally committed to building "pathways to welcome the Ukrainian population fleeing those territories" and promoting processes of "inclusion in our communities".
"Housing is not enough", the minister noted. She stressed the importance of initiatives to promote integration such as Italian-language courses, initiatives for children in schools and help for female refugees "because we know that the majority of those arriving are women" on issues such as navigating the labor market.