The Regional Government is considering an operation that involves triangulation by other countries through which the connection to Russia can still be made, in order to help the 200 Russian tourists leave Madeira. This is a subject on which Eduardo Jesus expects to have more information by the end of the day.
In a note sent to the media, the regional secretary of Tourism reaffirms that the Regional Government remains committed to helping Ukrainian and Russian tourists who remain in the Region. “The situations are always being monitored in line with the operators and their respective DMC (Destination Management Company) in Madeira, as well as with the Regional Directorate for Communities and External Cooperation and the Foreigners and Borders Service (SEF)”, he says.
The executive led by Miguel Albuquerque recalls that we are talking about different situations between Ukrainian and Russian citizens. The regional secretary, Eduardo Jesus adds that “for any of the communities, the process goes through the SEF”. “In the case of Ukrainians who want to stay in Madeira, for applications for subsidiary protection and, in relation to Russians, for the extension of visas that are necessary so that they can travel back to their country of origin”, explains the official.
The official says that many of the visas required for the trip are coming to an end, but informs that the SEF is prepared to extend them so that they can be used on the return trip.
Still no response from the Russian Embassy.
For now, there is still no response from the Russian Embassy in Lisbon. The regional secretary for Tourism and Cultural underlines that “at this moment, Ukrainian citizens and Russian citizens are protected in Madeira by the Regional Government, which has contracted accommodation for the two groups. In this regime, we have 70 Ukrainian tourists and 188 Russian tourists”, explains Eduardo Jesus.
The government official indicates that “the situation must evolve in a logic of social support” through Social Security and the mechanisms that are activated for this purpose.
He further states that, for this reason, Social Security, through the Regional Secretariat for Social Inclusion and Citizenship, has already been involved in the process so that there is continuity of protection for these people and better coordination of all stakeholders is carried out.
“The Regional Government is properly coordinated and maintains a team in which people from the various ‘attack fronts’ participate. What is possible to achieve today, will dictate the type of decision we have to make in the coming days”, assumes Eduardo Jesus.
The Madeiran executive states that its primary objective is to obtain, as quickly as possible, “solutions for these citizens, not only for those who need to be welcomed locally, but also for those who want to return to their homes”.
“The strong dependence on third parties, namely in terms of international transport and the limitations posed by the existing restrictions, puts us in a very demanding performance stage”, adds the minister.