September 29, 2022

A lot more EU members speak away against proposed Russian visitor ban

The goal of sanctions is to reprimand the Russian government, not really regular people, Portugal says

Cyprus plus Portugal are refusing in order to back a proposal by several other EU nations in order to ban Russian tourists, included in anti-Moscow sanctions over the Ukraine conflict.

“ Portugal thinks that the fundamental objective of the sanctions is to punish the Russian war machine instead of the Russian people, ”   the Portuguese Foreign Ministry said inside a statement to news internet site ECO on Friday.

Kornelios Korneliou, Common Secretary of the Cyprus Foreign Ministry, said his nation also opposes a quilt ban on Russian tourists.   “ It might be a decision in the wrong direction, ” Konreliou told Politico magazine on Friday.   “ We believe in people-to-people contacts. ”  

Cyprus has a sizable populace of Russian-speakers, around 50, 000 of whom live in the southern city of Limassol, according to Politico.

“ We shouldn’t prevent these communities from coming into connection with families and friends, ”   Korneliou said.   “ The primary weapon is European oneness and our partners need to respect the sensitivities more on this issue. ”

Greece suspended issuing visas to Russians in late June, but started again the following month. Like Cyprus, Greece is a popular tourist destination for Russians, and, according to Politico, Athens also opposes a total ban on Russian website visitors.

Several EUROPEAN countries, including the Czech Republic, Poland, Latvia, Estonia and Finland, have been pushing for an EU-wide ban on Schengen visas for Russians. Estonian Foreign Minister Urmas Reinsalu told the TV channel MAKE A MISTAKE this month that Ruskies citizens  “ by way of a passivity, bear moral responsibility” for the actions of their government and that it is  “ completely morally unacceptable”   to allow Russians to travel as visitors to Europe during the Russia-Ukraine conflict.

That view was rejected simply by German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, who said the EUROPEAN should not shut its doors to all Russian nationals.   “ It is important to us to understand that there are a lot of people fleeing from Russia because they are disagreeing with the Russian regime, ”   Scholz informed reporters during a trip to Norway this week.

The matter will be discussed at a conference of EU foreign ministers in Prague on August 31.

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