European countries have reduced the issuance of multiple-entry visas for Russian citizens to a minimum, and a number of states are putting forward obviously impossible conditions for obtaining entry permits for Russians. This was announced on Monday, January 16, by State Secretary – Deputy Foreign Minister of the Russian Federation Yevgeny Ivanov.
He noted that, in particular, those who wish to obtain a visa are faced with the inability to pay the visa fee through Western banks, as well as present a medical insurance policy of a foreign insurer.
“It is extremely difficult to fulfill such requirements under the conditions of unprecedented Western sanctions, so the issuance of multiple-entry visas for Russians has been reduced to a minimum,” the diplomat explained to TASS.
He recalled that at the moment, Russian citizens are prohibited from entering Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Finland, the Czech Republic and Estonia for tourist purposes.
On September 12, 2022, the visa facilitation agreement between Russia and the European Union, signed 15 years earlier, terminated. Now Russian citizens will need to pay €80 instead of €35 to process entry documents to the EU. In addition, the maximum processing time for visa applications will be extended to 45 days, and the list of required documents will be expanded.
In October, a number of countries closed entry for Russians on tourist visas.
However, Russia has many contacts with countries that allow Russians to enter without unnecessary difficulties. Senator Alexei Pushkov recalled them on January 16. He pointed out that talk about Russia’s fictional isolation in the West is typical of people who have never looked at the world map. The politician said that citizens of the Russian Federation can freely visit more than 100 countries.
Some countries have imposed anti-Russian sanctions, including restricting or stopping the issuance of visas to Russians, against the backdrop of a special operation carried out by Moscow since February 24 to protect the Donbass, the beginning of which Russian President Vladimir Putin announced on February 24.