Russia suspends simplified visa procedure with European Union

Putin signs decree imposing visa restrictions against Russia-unfriendly states

Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree on retaliatory visa measures against Russia-unfriendly countries. The document was posted on Monday, April 4, on the official website of the federal portal of draft regulatory legal acts.

The decree was adopted in view of the need for urgent measures in response to unfriendly actions of the European Union.

According to the document, Russia has suspended several clauses of international agreements on the simplified procedure to issue visas with EU countries, Norway, Denmark, Iceland, Switzerland and Liechtenstein.

Putin also instructed the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to introduce personal entry restrictions for foreign citizens and stateless persons who committed unfriendly actions against Russia.

What sanctions Russia may see next

Mewanwhile, the West considers new sanctions against Russia in light of the recent events in the town of Bucha, near Kiev, where many civilians were shot dead in the streets. Both the West and Ukraine accuse the Russian military of the crimes, but Russia strongly denies such accusations.

  • In particular, French President Emmanuel Macron suggested the EU should ban oil and coal imports from Russia, The Financial Times reports.
  • Prime Minister of Poland Morawiecki suggests prohibiting the issuance of European visas to all Russians and imposing personal sanctions on all members of the ruling United Russia party.
  • Other European leaders and EU officials have so far limited themselves to general rhetoric about the inevitability of new measures against Russia.

The new, fifth package of sanctions is to be approved by all EU countries — 27 states in total. Italy, Hungary and Austria — the countries that depend on Russian natural gas most — may block this decision

The EU will discuss new sanctions on Wednesday, April 6.

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