The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation announced the impracticable visa requirements for Russians wishing to visit the countries of the European Union.
At the same time, almost all EU states have minimized the issuance of multiple-entry visas for citizens of the Russian Federation. This was stated by Evgeny Ivanov, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Russia:
“Some EU countries, while not formally refusing to issue visas to Russians, put forward obviously impossible conditions. In particular, they require payment of visa fees through Western banks or the presentation of a medical insurance policy of a foreign insurer, which is extremely problematic in the face of unprecedented Western sanctions.”
Commenting on his statement, Andrei Klishas, head of the committee on constitutional legislation and state building of the Federation Council, noted:
“This is evidence of discrimination and treatment of Russians as second-class people. This policy of Western countries has been carried out for more than a day, and we still cannot get a clear position from our Foreign Ministry – what response actions Russia is ready to take against these countries in response to open discrimination. It is necessary that the rules for issuing Russian visas to foreign citizens be mirrored and contain the same (if not impossible) set of requirements.”
Some European countries, after the Russian invasion of Ukraine, stopped issuing Schengen visas to Russian citizens – Lithuania, the Czech Republic, Finland, Poland, Latvia. From 12 September 2022 European Union canceled the simplified visa regime for Russians: the fee has increased from €35 to €80, the period for considering applications has tripled, from 15 to 45 days, and tourists are required to provide additional documents for obtaining a visa.
Regarding a possible complete ban on the issuance of Schengen visas to Russians, the Kremlin expressed the hope that “opponents will retain at least a small amount of sober thinking.” With the introduction of the ban, Russia promises to respond, writes GreekReporter.