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Visas of Ukrainians in Australia expanded by six months amid invasion

Ukrainians in Australia whose visas are set to expire by the end of June will be permitted to stay an extra six months, according to Australia’s prime minister.

The news: Ukrainians applying for Australian visas will be given precedence over other nationalities, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Thursday.

  • Morrison made the announcement one day after Australia imposed sanctions on eight members of Russia’s Security Council in retaliation for Russia’s activities in Ukraine.
  • A number of banks and financial institutions have also been sanctioned.
  • Sanctions on the transportation, energy, mining, and telecommunications sectors, which have been in place since 2014, have now been extended to rebel-held parts of Ukraine that Russia recognises as autonomous.
  • Meanwhile, Ukraine’s president dismissed Moscow’s contention that his country is a security concern, warning that a Russian invasion may result in tens of thousands of deaths.
  • In a video message delivered early Thursday, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy made the remarks.
  • In an emotional speech in Russia, he stated, “The people of Ukraine and the Ukrainian government desire peace. However, if we are attacked in a way that threatens our freedom and the lives of our citizens, we will fight back.”

Late Wednesday, Zelenskyy attempted to contact Russian President Vladimir Putin, but the Kremlin remained mute.

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