POLAND GRANTS AMNESTY TO ILLEGAL MIGRANTS
European Union member Poland which is also part of the 25-state Schengen free travel zone on Friday granted amnesty to some of the estimated 50-70,000 illegal migrants believed to be living on its territory, of which Ukrainians make up the majority. “We want Poland to be an open, hospitable and friendly country,” Polish President Bronislaw Komorowski said after signing the amnesty on Friday.
Approved in parliament in late July, the amnesty law will come into force January 1, 2012 and migrants will have six months to register with Polish authorities.
Citizens of neighbouring non-EU Ukraine make up the majority of illegal migrants residing in Poland.
Those seeking amnesty will gain residence rights for two years, including the right to legal employment.