MainMain

European Parliament approves visa suspension mechanism

EU countries should do the same in the coming two weeks.

European Parliament approves visa suspension mechanism
Photo: Photo: ecb.europa.eu

The European Parliament approved the mechanism for the suspension of visa-free travel to third countries, RFERL correspondent Rikard Jozwiak reported via Twitter on 15 february.

"EP has now endorsed the visa suspension mechanism. now for EU member states to do the same in the next 2 weeks #Georgia #Ukraine," he wrote.

On 2 February, the European Parliament canceled visas for Georgian citizens. Initially, Ukraine and Georgia were to receive visa-free regime simultaneously, but the process was split later.

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker has promised that the EU will introduce a visa-free regime for Ukraine until the summer of 2017.

Last December, the EU agreed to suspend visa free travel with third countries for 9 months. Among the possible preconditions for the suspension are failures of the third countries to stick to readmission agreements, as well as a significant increase in risks for the internal security of the EU member states in the event of an increase in the number of illegal migrants.

Visa-free travel regime may be suspended on a requirement of a EU member state and the European Commission. The suspension will be effective for nine months, or, in the case of continued non-fulfillment of obligations visa liberalization by a third country, extended to 18 months.