Latvia extends restrictions on the entry of Russian citizens

By TravelWiseFeb 28, 2024 15:21 PMNews
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Latvia extends entry restrictions for Russian citizens
Latvia extends entry restrictions for Russian citizens. Source: Delfi

The Latvian government has decided to extend the entry restrictions for Russian citizens to Latvia until next spring, given the security threat posed by Russia.

The draft decree provides for the extension of the restrictions until March 4, 2025, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Latvia (MFA) told LETA news agency, Delfi reports.

In connection with Russia's military invasion of Ukraine, the number of Russian citizens wishing to enter the European Union (EU) through the land border has sharply increased, the Latvian Foreign Ministry reports.

Latvia extends restrictions on the entry of Russian citizens
Latvia extends restrictions on the entry of Russian citizens. Source: Freepik

The restrictions were introduced in Latvia on September 9, 2022. According to the Cabinet of Ministers' order, the issuance of visas to Russian citizens is also restricted. A total of 1956 visas were issued to Russian citizens at Latvian diplomatic and consular missions abroad from the date of the decree's adoption in 2022 until December 31, 2023.

Applications for visas are accepted only in exceptional cases - from family members of Latvian citizens and EU citizens, and from Russian citizens who have been granted the right to reside in Latvia on the basis of the Law on Repatriation and the Law on Immigration. Or in cases of humanitarian circumstances, such as a serious illness of a close relative or a funeral, in case of a threat to a person's safety or an invitation to participate in a court hearing by a Latvian court, the Foreign Ministry explained.

As TravelWise wrote, other EU member states, such as Finland and the Czech Republic, have also adopted local regulations restricting the entry of Russian citizens. There is currently no information to indicate that any of the countries are planning to ease any of the restrictions.

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