16 Aug 2022 21:53

Calls for partial ban of Schengen visa for Russians violate freedom of movement - ombudsman

MOSCOW. Aug 16 (Interfax) - Calls for Russians to be issued with fewer Schengen visas violate the principle of the freedom of movement; European governments should respect international rights, Russian ombudsman Tatyana Moskalkova said.

"Over the past few days there have been calls in the West to bar Russian citizens from EU member states completely. Such manifestations of nationalism and discrimination grossly violate the fundamental principle of the freedom of movement enshrined in universal and regional international legal acts," Moskalkova was quoted on her official Telegram channel as saying on Tuesday.

She also commented on the remarks by Gunnar Beck, a German member of the European parliament, who said that such a ban would be unlawful.

"The voice of common sense from the MEP instills the hope that international law and human rights are not a hollow sound for European authorities," Moskalkova said.

Earlier, the Estonian government approved a decision to restrict visa issuance to Russian citizens and ban those already issued with an Estonian visa from visiting the country for tourism, business, sports or cultural purposes.

Among those favoring such measures were also Finnish Prime Minister Sanna Marin, Czech Foreign Minister Jan Lipvasky and Latvian President Egils Levits.