The Czech Foreign Minister announced on Wednesday, 12 October, the country will join the Baltic states, Finland and Poland in banning Russian tourists, even if they have a Schengen issued visa.
Over the past two months, EU countries have, one by one, taken measures to limit the number of Russian citizens arriving in Europe. After Zelensky’s call for a complete ban on Russian citizens, Estonia, Finland and Latvia joined the plead for EU members to restrict Russians’ access.
At the beginning of September, the European Commission moved to suspend the Visa Facilitation Agreement between the EU and Russia, but the Council still needs to adopt the proposal. In the meantime, Finland took measures to “limit or completely prevent” Russian tourists from entering the country, while Estonia reminded other member states that the countries bordering Russia have to suffer all the incoming tourists, even if the visas are issued by other countries in the Schengen area.
While Russian rockets fall on a children’s playground and on people in Ukraine, up to 200 Russian Federation citizens travel to the Czech Republic via international airports every day.Jan Lipavský, Foreign Minister Czech Republic
Now, the Czech Republic joins the other EU countries in forbidding Russians to enter the country, even if they have a visa issued by other members of the Schengen area. According to Schengen rules a holder of a visa issued by any of the Member States can enter any country in the area. Starting 25 October, this will no longer be possible for Russians who want to enter the Czech Republic.
Foreign Minister Jan Lipavský made the announcement on Wednesday, 12 October. The ban is aimed at Russian citizens who hold visas for tourism, sport or culture, regardless of which country issued it.