This was reported by the Estonian publication ERR.EE.
According to the message, since August 18, Estonia has stopped allowing citizens of the Russian Federation to enter the country with visas issued by the country.
“Since August 18, the issuance of Estonian visas to citizens of Russia has been restricted, and citizens of the Russian Federation with visas issued by the Republic of Estonia whose purpose of travel is tourism, business, sports or culture will not be allowed to enter Estonia,” writes ERR.EE.
The Minister of Internal Affairs of Estonia, Lauri Läenemets, said that this sanction is necessary, because with its aggression against Ukraine, Russia is also attacking European values and freedoms.
“Therefore, Russian citizens cannot have the self-evident freedom to enjoy the opportunities provided by the same European values and freedoms offered by the European Union: whether it is recreation, education or entrepreneurial activity,” Lyaenemets said.
Liaenemets also noted that of the total number of visas issued to Russian citizens, about 53,000 were issued for tourism and business trips.
“On average, about 2.5 thousand Russian citizens enter Estonia per day, of which about 1,250 come with a short-term visa. Half of them, in turn, are issued by Estonia, the rest are issued by other Schengen countries. Therefore, this measure has a certain limited impact, however, to achieve a real sanctioning effect, visa restrictions should be introduced by all EU countries,” the minister said.
Lyaenemets emphasized that from August 18, citizens of Russia who go to Estonia to visit a close relative who lives here, who has Estonian citizenship or a long-term residence permit, will be able to apply for an Estonian visa; Russian diplomats working in Estonia and their family members; employees related to international transportation of goods and passengers; persons who can move on the basis of the law of the European Union and persons for whom Estonia considers it justified to issue a visa for humanitarian reasons.
It is noted that the ban does not apply to citizens of Russia who have previously been issued a Schengen visa and who have a valid short-term registration for work in Estonia and an Estonian visa.
“They can work here until the relevant permits expire. Almost 1,659 citizens of the Russian Federation today have valid residence permits issued for work,” the minister explained.
- Earlier it was reported that the country’s authorities intend not to allow citizens of Russia with Schengen visas issued by Estonia to enter the country. However, there are a number of exceptions.
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