President Volodymyr Zelenskyy addressed the European Union in a video message urging it to introduce "visa solutions" for citizens of the russian federation as part of the 8th sanctions package against russia.
“I spoke today with the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen. It was, as usual, a very informative, very useful conversation about all aspects of our relations. I thanked for the support already provided, as well as for the efforts to limit russian excess profits for oil and gas. I called for speeding up the provision of financial assistance to us, Ukraine. We discussed new sanctions steps. In particular, I believe that the eighth sanctions package should provide Europe-wide visa solutions for russian citizens - such that none of those involved in this war could enjoy European hospitality," Zelenskyy said.
He emphasized that if the citizens of the russian federation support terror against Ukraine, against all of Europe, if they silently observe the genocide in Ukraine, then they should not be able to use Europe for entertainment and fun.
"This is an important moral thing. Europe is a territory of values, not a "Disneyland" for supporters of terror. And visa restrictions will definitely demonstrate this. The free world should encourage russians to act - to act against those who started this war," Zelenskyy said.
“By the way, this is the same as with the gas issue. Ukraine has repeatedly warned Europe that maintaining “North Stream” ties with Russia will be a problem that can turn into a catastrophe at any moment. This is exactly what happened. Visa omnivorousness towards the citizens of the aggressor state, financial ties with russia, energy dependence on russia - all these are things that Moscow uses against Europe. And I am grateful to those European leaders who are aware of the level of the threat," the President of Ukraine added.
On 9 August, President Zelenskyy called on western countries to ban entry to all Russian citizens. In an interview with the Washington Post, he said that "the most important sanctions are the closure of borders - because the russians are taking away someone else's land."
On 31 August, the EU foreign ministers agreed to completely terminate the visa facilitation agreement with Russia.
Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba recommended that russians wishing to enter the EU complain to the Kremlin.