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    Since August 18, Estonia has restricted the entry of Russians on Schengen visas issued by the republic

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    The Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the EU member states in two weeks, on August 31, will discuss at an informal meeting in Prague the possibility of changing the Schengen Code to reduce the issuance of visas to all Russians, with the exception of a number of categories of citizens of the Russian Federation, reports TASS with reference to a source in Brussels.

    It will be a question of both changing the Schengen Code, which does not allow the complete cessation of the issuance of Schengen visas on a national basis, and possible concerted actions of the EU countries within the framework of their existing now national competencies,” the agency’s interlocutor said. immediately join those EU countries that are already ready for such a step.

    “Complete refusal to issue Schengen visas is hardly possible, since there are always categories of citizens who must receive such visas – civil activists, opposition representatives, journalists, people who need to travel for humanitarian reasons, in particular for urgent treatment, ”the diplomat explained.

    He refused to comment on the idea of ​​forcing all Russians entering the EU to sign a paper that they condemn Russia‘s special operation in Ukraine.

    The main visa powers are in the hands of the member states of the community, not Brussels, so to run visa restrictions against Russia, the EU countries, most likely, will be at the level of additional agreements between themselves, ”concluded the interlocutor of the publication.

    “They have the right to decide for themselves who to issue visas”

    EU countries have the right to decide for themselves who to issue or stop issuing visas, indicated in turn in the press service of the European Commission.

    We add that from today, August 18, Estonia introduces visa restrictions for Russians. Thus, citizens of the Russian Federation who have already received a Schengen visa in the republic from Thursday will not be able to enter the country.

    At this stage, the Estonian authorities they promise to let into the country those Russians who have received a corresponding mark in their passport from other countries participating in the Schengen agreement. Russian diplomats working in Estonia and their family members are also still allowed to enter the country. At the same time, Tallinn does not exclude the issuance of visas to Russians for humanitarian reasons, reports RIA Novosti.

    “Sanctions should not be imposed against the whole people”

    Meanwhile, the UN opposed the policy of Tallinn, saying that the Estonian government discriminates against Russian citizens. In addition, the proposal to ban Schengen visas was not supported by German Chancellor Olaf Scholz. The German leader noted that it is difficult for him to imagine the termination of the issuance of visas for citizens of the Russian Federation, and also stressed that sanctions should not be imposed against the entire people, reports Profi.Travel .

    Plans to significantly reduce the number of visas issued to Russians were earlier announced in Helsinki. The Finnish authorities intend to accept no more than 100-200 applications per day instead of the current 1 thousand

    Finnish Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto reported, that a special model has been developed in which priority will be given to applicants applying for a visa for family reasons, work or study. It is expected that the corresponding changes will come into force as early as September. tourist visas for citizens of the Russian Federation need to be “interrupted at the level of Europe.” According to him, such a measure would be an additional sanction against Russia.

    In particular, Lithuanian Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis agreed with Riga’s position. He believes that the visas already issued to Russians should be made invalid . “The best option would be a pan-European decision to declare these visas invalid. Then everyone would just stop issuing them,” concluded Landsbergis.

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