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 Post subject: Re: Abolishing the Visa requirement for Russia
Post Number:#31  PostPosted: 31 Jan 2011 20:15 
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Oh yes...you have to admire that.

I am watching carefully how it goes between Canada and Russia. Russia has been making noises about Canada's new visa forms and how they go too far. IF reciprocity was applied in this case it might become very painful for me to apply for a visa as a Canadian in the future.

Therefore I think I shall pursue my Estonian passport since by birthright I am allowed one. :) Then it would be nice if EU and Russia played nice.


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 Post subject: Re: Abolishing the Visa requirement for Russia
Post Number:#32  PostPosted: 01 Feb 2011 07:30 
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Unfortunately as an old age pensioner in the UK I have to find the way to resolve my personal difficulties for caring about my family.

The truth of the matter is that my wife has an old age widow mother in Russia, and me... the man in the family, I feel that it's my responsibility to make sure that she is cared for, well.

In my 1st letter to the president I explained to him that we can't afford to visit Russia frequently but having a long period Multi entry Visa to Russia it will help me in an emergency situation, like the one we had last November when my MIL was taken to hospital urgently and she had an operation for gal stones...... she nearly died because like all Russian women......would not listen to me to visit the doctor and find out why she had constant pains for over a year!

Never mind now she is better.......and has recovered from the 5 hours operation but can you imagine my frustration when I was told she has been taken urgently to hospital and we had to rely on relatives to do that?

Aeroflop has 3 flights a day to Moscow....... and I could be there next morning......at 6 AM if I had a visa............ and that is what I am talking about and will continue barking to the President and anybody else for that matter, as Lucky said, till I find the solution to my problem.

Thanks to the honest Dutch ministry that FINALLY I had the opportunity to get hold of the 2007 Agreement between Russia and the EU, which I was aware off but the Russians, in the VAC site do not give full details.......... and hide the fact that they have signed an agreement to facilitate close relatives for FREE! Now I can see why the President's office sent the letter to the consulate...... probably told them sort it out but the person that called my house fed us B/S in their first contact last March. according to his advice it cost us a day off work for Hanna plus nearly £150 costs to visit the VAC in London......for getting a 14 day visa! [angry.gif]

Well I have to wait for the Consul's reply to see if I can succeed or not. If he doesn't reply in a months time another letter will go to the President complaining about him......etc.

In my mind and reading the articles in the Agreement, as also highlighted by Shadow, I am entitled to a 5 year Multi Entry Visa to Russia and for FREE. doesn't matter of course even if I have to pay £35 pounds the latest increased charges!

Don't worry and I will keep you posted... because maybe other people are interested about it too!

I think that the EU is not the only part to be blamed in this matter, as the Russians claimed time after time.... but it is the Russians who drag their feet to sign the "The readmission agreement", which is one requirement for visa-free travel, under which Russian citizens overstaying their visas in the EU and foreign citizens who enter the EU through Russia and overstay their visas, may be sent back to the country of their arrival.

Russia has yet to sign nine executive protocols to the readmission agreement with the EU, the FMS announced.


The fact is that the Russians, like many other nations, have created a nice big earner and a big industry on the back of the Visa requirement and now don't like to give it up! Maybe the income from this operation is sufficient to pay all the Embassy's costs and Russia doesn't have to send money (currency) abroad to pay for these costs.

Anybody knows how many visas to Russia are issued daily by the Russian Consulate?

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 Post subject: Re: Relatives Visiting Russia under the Schegen visa agreeme
Post Number:#33  PostPosted: 01 Feb 2011 20:06 
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Shadow wrote:
Wiz, it is not really a secret that since 2007 there is an agreement between Russia and the EU where any EU citizen who is direct relative of a Russian citizen can receive a 5 year visa.
Shadow

I did say in another post before...... Thanks to the Honest Dutch Ministry that I came across the original copy of the agreement. [clap.gif]

You of course knew about it...... but I could not find the original copy of the agreement to read all the details, because the Russian consulate site and also the Russian Visa Centre in London make no comment whatsoever about it.

Any how this afternoon I had a call from the Consulate from somebody who wanted to discuss my letter to the Consul.

Well he told me that I am not entitled to a 5 year visa because I am not residing to the member state.... ie. Greece but in the UK, to which I replied......

The Agreement in English refer to the Russian relatives who want to visit their relatives living legally in Schegen country eg your Parents in Law and your wife that lives legally in Belgium............. but if Russia implements the Agreement correctly then my close relatives live in Russia and my wife is still registered there and pay taxes (one of the two must apply)....... so I am entitled to a 5 year visa... for FREE.
Quote:
The problem is that there has to be a direct relationship, and the Russian citizen must have an address in Russia. To get this between husband and wife, actually it means bending the rules. Which Russians do not mind

It appears that he was ignorant of the complete text or unable to understand the difference... so he said he will try to see how he can help me to resolve this problem by calling the Foreign Office in Moscow tomorrow again.

My guess is that tomorrow he will insist that I do not live in Greece....but I have told him already... I can go to Greece and apply there for a 5 yrs visa...... when I said that he stumbled ......and said he will clarify it!

Any how I do not see why do I have to go to Greece and apply in person there...... because the Agreement make no reference to this......... so in my view I can apply here too!

Well as Lucky said... I will continue barking until I get a 5 years visa for FREE ........because, in my view, I am entitled to one.

The Russians, as usual, are trying to be obstuctive because they don't want to work for free here in the UK issuing free visas to EU Schegen citizens...... they need to collect the money from issuing visas to any other Nationality. [wink.gif]

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 Post subject: Re: Abolishing the Visa requirement for Russia
Post Number:#34  PostPosted: 01 Feb 2011 22:10 
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AGREEMENT
between the European Community and the Russian Federation on the facilitation of
the issuance of visas to the citizens of the European Union and the Russian Federation


THE PARTIES,
THE EUROPEAN COMMUNITY, hereinafter referred to as ‘the Community’,
and
THE RUSSIAN FEDERATION,
DESIRING to facilitate people-to-people contacts as an important condition for a steady development of economic, humanitarian, cultural, scientific and other ties, by facilitating the issuing of visas to the citizens of the European Union and the Russian Federation on the basis of reciprocity,

HAVING REGARD to the Joint Statement agreed on the occasion of the St Petersburg Summit held on 31 May 2003 stating that the European Union and the Russian Federation agree to examine the conditions for visa-free travel as a long term perspective,

REAFFIRMING the intention to establish the visa-free travel regime between the Russian Federation and the European Union,

BEARING IN MIND the Agreement on Partnership and Cooperation of 24 June 1994 establishing a Partnership between the European Communities and their Member States, of the one part, and the Russian Federation, of the other part,

HAVING REGARD to the Joint Statement on EU Enlargement and EU–Russia Relations agreed on 27 April 2004 confirming the intention of the European Union and the Russian Federation to facilitate visa issuance for the citizens of the European Union and the Russian Federation on a reciprocal basis and to launch negotiations with a view to concluding an agreement,

RECOGNISING that this facilitation should not lead to illegal migration and paying special attention to security and readmission,

TAKING INTO ACCOUNT the Protocol on the position of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and Ireland and the Protocol integrating the Schengen acquis into the framework of the European Union, annexed to the Treaty on European Union of 7 February 1992 and the Treaty establishing the European Community of 25 March 1957 and confirming that the provisions of this Agreement do not apply to the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and Ireland,

TAKING INTO ACCOUNT the Protocol on the position of Denmark annexed to the Treaty on European Union of 7 February 1992 and the Treaty establishing the European Community of 25 March 1957 and confirming that the provisions of this Agreement do not apply to the Kingdom of Denmark,

HAVE AGREED AS FOLLOWS


Article 1

Purpose and scope of application

The purpose of this Agreement is to facilitate, on the basis of reciprocity, the issuance of visas for an intended stay of no more than 90 days per period of 180 days to the citizens of the European Union and the Russian Federation.

Article 2

General Clause

1. The visa facilitations provided in this Agreement shall apply to citizens of the European Union and of the Russian Federation only insofar as they are not exempted from the visa requirement by the laws and regulations of the Russian Federation, of the Community or the Member States, the present agreement or other international agreements.

2. The national law of the Russian Federation, or of the Member States or Community law shall apply to issues not covered by the provisions of this Agreement, such as the refusal to issue a visa, recognition of travel documents, proof of sufficient means of subsistence and the refusal of entry and expulsion measures.

Article 3

Definitions

For the purpose of this Agreement:

(a) ‘Member State’ shall mean any Member State of the European Union, with the exception of the Kingdom of Denmark, Ireland and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland;

(b) ‘Citizen of the European Union’ shall mean a national of a Member State as defined in point (a);

(c) ‘Citizen of the Russian Federation’ shall mean a person who possesses or has acquired citizenship of the Russian Federation in accordance with its national legislation;

(d) ‘Visa’ shall mean an authorisation/permission issued or a decision taken by a Member State or by the Russian Federation which is required with a view to:

— entry for an intended stay of no more than 90 days in total in that Member State or in several Member States or in the Russian Federation,

— entry for transit through the territory of that Member State or several Member States or of the Russian Federation.

(e) ‘legally residing person’ shall mean:

— for the Russian Federation, a citizen of the European Union who acquired a permission for temporary residing, a residence permit or an educational or working visa for a period of more than 90 days in the Russian Federation,

— for the European Union, a citizen of the Russian Federation authorised or entitled to stay for more than 90 days in the territory of a Member State, on the basis of Community or national legislation.


Article 4

Documentary evidence regarding the purpose of the journey

1. For the following categories of citizens of the European Union and of the Russian Federation, the following documents are sufficient for justifying the purpose of the journey to the other Party:

(a) for members of official delegations who, following an official invitation addressed to the Member States, the European Union or the Russian Federation, shall participate in meetings, consultations, negotiations or exchange programmes, as well as in events held in the territory of the Russian Federation or one of the Member States by intergovernmental organisations:

— a letter issued by a competent authority of a Member State or of the Russian Federation, or by a European institution confirming that the applicant is a member of its delegation travelling to the territory of the other Party to participate in the aforementioned events, accompanied by a copy of the official invitation;

(b) for business people and representatives of business organisations:

— a written request from a host legal person or company, organisation, or an office or their branches, state and local authorities of the Russian Federation and the Member States or organising committees of trade and industrial exhibitions, conferences and symposia held in the territories of the Russian Federation or one of the Member States;

(c) for drivers conducting international cargo and passenger transportation services between the territories of the Russian Federation and the Member States in vehicles registered in the Member States or in the Russian Federation:

— a written request from the national association (union) of carriers of the Russian Federation or the national associations of carriers of the Member States providing for international road transportation, stating the purpose, duration and frequency of the trips;

(d) for members of train, refrigerator and locomotive crews in international trains, travelling between the territories of the Member States and the Russian Federation:

— a written request from the competent railway company of the Russian Federation or the Member States stating the purpose, duration and frequency of the trips;

(e) for journalists:

— a certificate or other document issued by a professional organisation proving that the person concerned is a qualified journalist and a document issued by his/her employer stating that the purpose of the journey is to carry out journalistic work;

(f) for persons participating in scientific, cultural and artistic activities, including university and other exchange programmes:

— a written request from the host organisation to participate in those activities;

(g) for pupils, students, post-graduate students and accompanying teachers who undertake trips for the purposes of study or educational training, including in the framework of exchange programmes as well as other school related activities:

— a written request or a certificate of enrolment from the host university, academy, institute, college or school or student cards or certificates of the courses to be attended;

(h) for participants in international sports events and persons accompanying them in a professional capacity:

— a written request from the host organisation: competent authorities, national sport Federations of the Member States or the Russian Federation and National Olympic Committee of the Russian Federation or National Olympic Committees of the Member States;

(i) for participants in official exchange programmes organised by twin cities:

— a written request of the head of administration/mayor of these cities;

(j) for close relatives — spouses, children (including adopted), parents (including custodians), grandparents and grandchildren

— visiting citizens of the European Union or the Russian Federation legally residing in the territory of the Russian Federation or the Member States:

— a written request from the host person;

(k) for visiting military and civil burial grounds:

— an official document confirming the existence and preservation of the grave as well as family or other relationship between the applicant and the buried.

2. The written request mentioned in paragraph 1 of this Article shall contain the following items:

(a) for the invited person — name and surname, date of birth, sex, citizenship, number of the identity document, time and purpose of the journey, number of entries and name of minor children accompanying the invited person;

(b) for the inviting person — name, surname and address; or

(c) for the inviting legal person, company or organisation — full name and address: and

— if the request is issued by an organisation, the name and position of the person who signs the request,

— if the inviting person is a legal person or company or an office or their branch established in the territory of a Member State, the registration number as required by the national law of the Member State concerned,

— if the inviting person is a legal person or company or an office or their branch established in the territory of the Russian Federation, the tax identification number.

3. For the categories of citizens mentioned in paragraph 1 of this Article, all categories of visas are issued according to the simplified procedure without requiring any other justification, invitation or validation concerning the purpose of the journey, provided for by the legislation of the Parties.

Article 5

Issuance of multiple-entry visas

1. Diplomatic missions and consular posts of the Member States and of the Russian Federation shall issue multiple-entry visas with the term of validity of up to five years to the following categories of citizens:

(a) members of national and regional Governments and Parliaments, Constitutional Courts and Supreme Courts, if they are not exempted from the visa requirement by the present Agreement, in the exercise of their duties, with a term of validity limited to their term of office if this is less than five years;

(b) spouses and children (including adopted), who are under the age of 21 or are dependant, visiting citizens of the European Union and the Russian Federation legally residing in the territory of the Russian Federation or the Member States, with the term of validity limited to the duration of the validity of their authorisation for legal residence.

2. Diplomatic missions and consular posts of the Member States and of the Russian Federation shall issue multiple-entry visas with the term of validity of up to one year to the following categories of citizens, provided that during the previous year they have obtained at least one visa, have made use of it in accordance with the laws on entry and stay in the territory of the visited State and that there are reasons for requesting a multiple-entry visa:

(a) for members of official delegations who, following an official invitation addressed to the Member States, the European Union or the Russian Federation, shall participate in official meetings, consultations, negotiations or exchange programmes, as well as in events held in the territory of the Russian Federation or one of the Member States by intergovernmental organisations;

(b) business people and representatives of business organisations who regularly travel to the Russian Federation or the Member States;

(c) drivers conducting international cargo and passenger transportation services between the territories of the Russian Federation and the Member States in vehicles registered in the Member States or the Russian Federation;

(d) members of train, refrigerator and locomotive crews in international trains, travelling between the territories of the Russian Federation and the Member States;

(e) persons participating in scientific, cultural and artistic activities, including university and other exchange programmes, who regularly travel to the Russian Federation or the Member States;

(f) participants in international sports events and persons accompanying them in a professional capacity;

(g) journalists;

(h) participants in official exchange programmes organised by twin cities.

3. Diplomatic missions and consular posts of the Member States and of the Russian Federation shall issue multiple-entry visas with the term of validity of a minimum of two years and a maximum of five years to the categories of citizens referred to in paragraph 2 of this Article, provided that during the previous two years they have made use of the one year multiple-entry visas in accordance with the laws on entry and stay in the territory of the visited State and that the reasons for requesting a multiple-entry visa are still valid.

4. The total period of stay of persons referred to in paragraphs 1 to 3 of this Article shall not exceed 90 days per period of 180 days in the territory of the Member States or in the Russian Federation.

Article 6

Fees for processing visa applications

1. The fee for processing visa applications shall amount to EUR 35. The aforementioned amount may be reviewed in accordance with the procedure provided for in Article 15(4).

2. The Parties shall charge a fee of EUR 70 for processing visas in cases where the visa application and the supporting documents have been submitted by the visa applicant within three days before his/her envisaged date of departure. This will not apply to cases pursuant to Article 6(3), (b), (e) and (f) and Article 7(3).

3. Fees for processing the visa application are waived for the following categories of persons:

(a) for close relatives — spouses, children (including adopted) parents (including custodians), grandparents and grandchildren — of citizens of the European Union and of the Russian Federation legally residing in the territory of the Russian Federation or the Member States;

(b) for members of official delegations who, following an official invitation addressed to the Member States, the European Union or the Russian Federation, shall participate in meetings, consultations, negotiations or exchange programmes, as well as in events held in the territory of the Russian Federation or one of the Member States by intergovernmental organisations;

(c) members of national and regional Governments and Parliaments, Constitutional Courts and Supreme Courts, if they are not exempted from the visa requirement by the present Agreement;

(d) pupils, students, post-graduate students and accompanying teachers who undertake trips for the purpose of study or educational training;

(e) disabled persons and the person accompanying them, if necessary;

(f) persons who have presented documents proving the necessity of their travel on humanitarian grounds, including to receive urgent medical treatment and the person accompanying such person, or to attend a funeral of a close relative, or to visit a seriously ill close relative;

(g) participants in youth international sports events and persons accompanying them;

(h) persons participating in scientific, cultural and artistic activities including university and other exchange programmes;

(i) participants in official exchange programmes organised by twin cities.

Article 7

Length of procedures for processing visa applications

1. Diplomatic missions and consular posts of the Member States and the Russian Federation shall take a decision on the request to issue a visa within 10 calendar days of the date of the receipt of the application and documents required for issuing the visa.

2. The period of time for taking a decision on a visa application may be extended up to 30 calendar days in individual cases, notably when further scrutiny of the application is needed.

3. The period of time for taking a decision on a visa application may be reduced to three working days or less in urgent cases.

Article 8

Departure in case of lost or stolen documents

Citizens of the European Union and of the Russian Federation who have lost their identity documents, or from whom these documents have been stolen while staying in the territory of the Russian Federation or the Member States, may leave that territory on the grounds of valid identity documents entitling to cross the border issued by diplomatic missions or consular posts of the Member States or of the Russian Federation without any visa or other authorisation.

Article 9

Extension of visa in exceptional circumstances

The citizens of the European Union and of the Russian Federation who do not have the possibility to leave the territory of the Russian Federation and of the Member States by the time stated in their visas for reasons of force majeure shall have the term of their visas extended free of charge in accordance with the legislation applied by the receiving State for the period required for their return to the State of their residence.

Article 10

Registration procedures

The Parties agree to undertake measures as soon as possible to simplify the procedures of registration, with the view to entitle the citizens of the Russian Federation and citizens of the European Union to the equal treatment regarding registration procedures while staying in the territory of the Russian Federation or of the Member States, respectively.

Article 11

Diplomatic passports

1. Citizens of the Russian Federation or the Member States, holders of valid diplomatic passports may enter, leave and transit through the territories of the Member States or the Russian Federation without visas.

2. Citizens mentioned in paragraph 1 of this Article may stay in the territories of the Russian Federation or the Member States for a period not exceeding 90 days per period of 180 days.

Article 12

Territorial validity of visas

Subject to the national rules and regulations concerning national security of the Russian Federation and of the Member States and subject to EU rules on visas with limited territorial validity, the citizens of the Russian Federation and of the European Union shall be entitled to travel within the territory of the Member States and of the Russian Federation on equal basis with European Union and Russian citizens.

Article 13

Joint Committee for management of the Agreement

1. The Parties shall set up a Joint Committee for management of the Agreement (hereinafter referred to as ‘the Committee’), composed by representatives of the European Community and of the Russian Federation. The Community shall be represented by the European Commission, assisted by experts from the Member States.

2. The Committee shall, in particular, have the following tasks:

(a) monitoring the implementation of the present Agreement;

(b) suggesting amendments or additions to the present Agreement;

(c) to examine and, if deemed necessary, propose amendments to this agreement in case of new accessions to the European Union.

3. The Committee shall meet whenever necessary at the request of one of the Parties and at least once a year.

4. The Committee shall establish its rules of procedure.

Article 14

Relation of this Agreement with Agreements between Member States and the Russian Federation

As from its entry into force, this Agreement shall take precedence over provisions of any bilateral or multilateral agreements or arrangements concluded between Member States and the Russian Federation, insofar as the provisions of the latter agreements or arrangements cover issues that are dealt with by the present Agreement.

Article 15

Final clauses

1. This Agreement shall be ratified or approved by the Parties in accordance with their respective procedures and shall enter into force on the first day of the second month following the date on which the Parties notify each other that the procedures referred to above have been completed.

2. By way of derogation to paragraph 1 of this Article, the present Agreement shall only enter into force at the date of the entry into force of the agreement between the Russian Federation and the European Community on readmission if this date is after the date provided for in paragraph 1 of this Article.

3. This Agreement is concluded for an indefinite period of time, unless terminated in accordance with paragraph 6 of this Article.

4. This Agreement may be amended by written agreement of the Parties. Amendments shall enter into force after the Parties have notified each other of the completion of their internal procedures necessary for this purpose.

5. Each Party may suspend in whole or in part this Agreement for reasons of public order, protection of national security or protection of public health. The decision on suspension shall be notified to the other Party not later than 48 hours before its entry into force. The Party that has suspended the application of this Agreement shall immediately inform the other Party once the reasons for the suspension no longer apply.

6. Each Party may terminate this Agreement by giving written notice to the other Party. This Agreement shall cease to be in force 90 days after the date of receipt of such notification. Done at Sochi on the twenty fifth day of May in the year two thousand and six, in duplicate each in the Czech, Danish, Dutch, English, Estonian, Finnish, French, German, Greek, Hungarian, Italian, Latvian, Lithuanian, Maltese, Polish, Portuguese, Slovak, Slovenian, Spanish, Swedish and Russian languages, each of these texts being equally authentic.


Hecho en Sochi, el veinticinco de mayo del dos mil seis.
V Soči dne dvacátého pátého května dva tisíce šest.
Udfærdiget i Sotji den femogtyvende maj to tusind og seks.
Geschehen zu Sotschi am fünfundzwanzigsten Mai zweitausendsechs.
Kahe tuhande kuuenda aasta maikuu kahekümne viiendal päeval Sotšis.
'Εγινε στο Σότσι, στις είκοσι πέντε Μαΐου δύο χιλιάδες έξι.
Done at Sochi on the twenty fifth day of May in the year two thousand and six.
Fait à Sotchi, le vingt cinq mai deux mille six.
Fatto a Soci, addì venticinque maggio duemilasei.
Sočos, divtūkstoš sestā gada divdesmit piektajā maijā.
Priimta du tūkstančiai šeštų metų gegužės dvidešimt penktą dieną Sočyje.
Kelt Szocsiban, a kettőezer hatodik év május huszonötödik napján.
Magħmul f'Sochi, fil-ħamsa u għoxrin jum ta' Mejju tas-sena elfejn u sitta.
Gedaan te Sotsji, de vijfentwintigste mei tweeduizend zes.
Sporządzono w Soczi dnia dwudziestego piątego maja roku dwutysięcznego szóstego.
Feito em Sotchi, em vinte e cinco de Maio de dois mil e seis.
V Soči dňa dvadsiateho piateho mája dvetisícšesť.
V Soči, petindvajsetega maja leta dva tisoč šest.
Tehty Sotšissa kahdentenakymmenentenäviidentenä päivänä toukokuuta vuonna kaksituhattakuusi.
Som skedde i Sotji den tjugofemte maj tjugohundrasex.
Adoptată la Sochi, la douăzeci și cinci mai două mii șase.
Совершено в г. Сочи двадцать пятого мая две тысячи шестого года.

[crying.gif] [crying.gif] [crying.gif]

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 Post subject: Re: Abolishing the Visa requirement for Russia
Post Number:#35  PostPosted: 02 Mar 2011 03:41 
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Russian Visas May Be Ditched

MOSCOW, March 1 - RIA Novosti.

Russia may cancel visas for foreigners, a senior Federal Border Service official said Tuesday, adding that the move would not harm security and might attract more European tourists.

The number of people traveling to Russia from the European Union has been steadily decreasing in recent years, the official, Vyacheslav Dorokhin, said at a news conference in Moscow.

"It's hard to explain why it is happening," Dorokhin said, adding that ever more Russians are traveling to the EU, Interfax reported.

"I think the cancellation of the visa regime would help boost the number of people looking to visit our country," he said, according to RIA-Novosti.

Dorokhin did not specify any timeframe for a cancellation of visas and did not say whether he was referring only to tourist visas or other types as well.

He also did not indicate whether his proposal referred solely to the EU or included other regions as well. He noted, though, that Russia has a visa-free regime with more than 30 countries.

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 Post subject: Re: Abolishing the Visa requirement for Russia
Post Number:#36  PostPosted: 14 Mar 2011 13:26 
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Writing for a 3rd time to the President of Russia

I know that many people will think that I am crazy and banging my head on a brick wall trying to make the Russian Government to change their immigration policies...... but as you can see on another thread Foreigner Bill Sails Through Duma if they want to do something... they can do it very quickly! [biggrin.gif]

I am sure that most of you must head read also the proposition made by Vladimir Putin to the American Government to drop the visas......... but that is a non starter because of the American attitude and I don't think it will happen any time soon.

Any how with that in mind... I wrote another letter to the President, just a few minutes of my time, and who knows......... he may be advised about my persistent writing and may.....do something about it!



My 3rd letter


President of the Russian Federation .............................................................................. 8 February 2011
Ilinka Str, No 23
103132,
Moscow,
Russia.


Your Excellency

I have written, to you, twice in the past, on the 14 January 2010 and also on the 28 October 2010, regarding a Visa and immigration problem that I have to face, each time I need to visit my extended Russian family, especially in an emergency and asked for your help to resolve it!

The Russian consulate in London has been in touch with me and has explained that under the current Russian legislation are unable to help me. It’s impossible for them to issue me with a 5 year Multi Entry Visa under the 2006 EU- Russian Federation agreement and also under the Federal Law of 15th August 1996 № 114-FL "On the procedure of entering and leaving the Russian Federation" as amended and effective from 12th March 2010, which only allows a 3 month maximum double entry period.

I am a Greek citizen, living in the UK and I am married to a lady who is Russian National.

After our wedding in Russia, my wife applied under the European Directive 2004/38/EU and was granted a visa, FREE of any charges, by the British Consulate and came to join me in the UK. As a Greek citizen, I exercised my right under the same EU Directive for free movement in the European Economic Area and my wife was granted a Resident Card which gave her the right, not only to reside in the UK with entitlement to work freely but also to FREE National Health Care and other state benefits. Additionally her Resident Card allows her to travel to any European country that is a member of the European community without the need for a Schegen or any other type of Visa.

The problem we are faced is that I (personally) cannot travel at a moments notice in an emergency situation, regarding her old mother, and support my wife with my presence there because I am required to have a visa to travel to Russian Federation but I still need a few days before I receive my visa.

I would like to ask for your help to resolve this problem. I hope the Russian Federation, in preparation of the pending Visa Free Agreement with the EU, would consider to make an amendment to the Federal Law of 15th August 1996 № 114-FL "On the procedure of entering and leaving the Russian Federation" for family members of Russian Nationals, as amended and effective from 12th March 2010, that allows 3 months maximum double entry period to additionally permit the Consular Authorities to issue a 5 year Multi Entry visa for close Family Members (spouse), Nationals of the EU countries, members of the Schegen Visa Agreement, irrespective of their current country of residence, which will be in line also with the EU- Russian Federation Agreement in force as of the 1st of June 2007.

I hope your Excellency would reconsider my request and help me to resolve this problem once and for all and I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Your sincerely


[biggrin.gif]

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 Post subject: Re: Abolishing the Visa requirement for Russia
Post Number:#37  PostPosted: 24 Mar 2011 17:44 
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When the Russians don't want to help
they ask the Consulate to reply to you....... in Russian!

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 Post subject: Re: Abolishing the Visa requirement for Russia
Post Number:#38  PostPosted: 24 Mar 2011 19:51 
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So for those of us who are a little lacking in Russian, what does it say?
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 Post subject: Re: Abolishing the Visa requirement for Russia
Post Number:#39  PostPosted: 24 Mar 2011 20:27 
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Malcolm wrote:
So for those of us who are a little lacking in Russian, what does it say?
[rolleyes.gif]
I thought Anna is fluent in Russian language........ [sarcastic.gif]

In one word........ Tough! [angry.gif]

You know very well that the Russian government is treating their people and anybody else for that matter with disdain and contempt and every time they amend something is making things worse. Now if you were one of them..... you would have the Law changed in 24 hours as they just did about the Registration.

If you haven't read the previous post, the EU v Russia Treaty signed in Sochi says that:

  • My wife, who is a Russian citizen can invite close relatives to visit or stay here for long time, BUT me as Greek or British citizen I can't.

  • In Russia the same happens in the opposite direction. The Russian Nationals can't invite any relatives but the EU National, legally residing there, can!

If you read above my letter, all I ask the President is a small amendment of the law, probably one line that will allow the consulates to issue a 5 year Multi entry visa to Russia for all the EU partners of Russian Nationals.

Now as you know we have to visit the RVC in London in person for my wife to sign an invitation letter for me.... her husband to visit "our house" in Russia. with max up to 3 months!

The Olympics coming very fast and then they will have to drop their trousers fast to accommodate all those visitors and they will become again a laughing stock, like it happen with Chelsea and Man UNT in Moscow, where they could not accommodate 48.000 visitors and had to drop the visa requirement.

Otherwise business as usual..... issuing around 400 - 500 visas a day... (90.000 visas issued in 2009) making money to pay all the Embassy and Consulate expenses in the UK [wink.gif] and of course they do the same anywhere on the world.

The Visa service... it's a huge business for all Governments! [angry2.gif]

[drinks.gif]

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 Post subject: Re: Abolishing the Visa requirement for Russia
Post Number:#40  PostPosted: 30 Mar 2011 13:45 
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Image [smoke.gif]

As we have already (experienced and) suspected long time ago, when the Russian Consulate appointed VFS Global to run their Visa Centre in London and Edinburgh, the Russian Government is following suit the steps and actions of the British Government and very soon, when the installation of the new technology finish, will start requiring the Biometrics of each person who is applying for a Visa to Russia.

At this instance we should NOT blame the Russians for following the actions of the British Government, which are treating the Russian applicants (citizens) appallingly and impose so much extra requirement and cost to their applications. Taking into consideration the size of the Russia Federation that's to me is an impossible position to be.

Operating only five Visa Application Centres, in Moscow, St Petersburg, Yekaterinburg, Novosibirsk and Rostov-on-Don everybody can understand the frustration of the Russian would be applicants and visitors to the UK! [angry2.gif]

Any how here is the latest development:

Image

30 March 2011, Moscow Times, By Howard Amos

While the Russian consulate in London is getting ready for deploying a biometric visa system, its headquarters in Moscow — the Foreign Ministry — denies such a plan is in the works.

“It’s only a question of time,” Jelena Kirilenko, managing director of the Russian Visa Center in London, said in an interview. “We are ready to establish a biometric system as soon as there is a necessity to do so.”

The use of biometric data would require each visa candidate to submit their application in person — adding a new layer of complication to an application system that was recently streamlined for British citizens.

The imminence of the new process was confirmed by the consular department of the Russian Embassy in London.

“The consulates of the Russian Federation’s Foreign Ministry will move to biometric visas in the near future,” said Andrei Batmanov, head of the consular section at Russia’s embassy in London. “Accordingly, in those countries where Russian visa centers are operating, the apparatus for taking biometrics will be installed.”

Batmanov said he did not know exactly when the biometric system would be introduced — or whether Britain would be the first country where it would be applied.

The Foreign Ministry in Moscow, however, denied that there were any plans to introduce a biometric requirement for visa applications.

“No biometric visas requiring the essential provision of photos or fingerprints — neither for British citizens nor citizens of another country — will be introduced in the foreseeable future, and there are no plans to introduce them,” a ministry source told The Moscow Times.

The ministry did not comment on when biometric processing equipment might be installed at passport control points in Russia.

The embassies of the United States and Britain in Moscow both told The Moscow Times that they had no specific information about biometric visas to Russia being an imminent requirement for their citizens.

“But there is a global move in this direction because it makes travel safer for everyone,” British Embassy spokesman James Barbour said.

A U.S. Embassy spokesman said: “The U.S. Embassy in Moscow has not been informed by the Russian government of any plans to implement biometric Russian visas for Americans.”

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