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Priceless paper: Refugees get IDs for new lives in Poland

Poland Russia Ukraine War
Posted at 4:32 PM, Mar 19, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-19 16:32:11-04

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Hoping to restore at least some normalcy after fleeing the war in Ukraine, thousands of refugees waited in long lines in the Polish capital of Warsaw to receive local identification papers that will allow them to move on with their lives.

Refugees started queuing by Warsaw’s National Stadium overnight to get the coveted PESEL identity cards that will allow them to work, live, go to school and get medical care or social benefits for the next 18 months.

Still, by mid-morning Saturday, many were told to come back another day, the demand was too high even though Polish authorities had simplified the process.

Poland has taken in more than 2 million refugees from Ukraine since Russia invaded on Feb. 24.