Czech visas to end for Russians, Belarusians with second citizenship

Czechia is set to cease issuing visas to Russians and Belarusians who also possess citizenship of other states. The country stopped granting visas to regular citizens of Russia and Belarus, except in humanitarian cases, soon after the former’s invasion of Ukraine last year.

Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs | Photo: Martin Vaniš,  Radio Prague International

The Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs wants to stop people from Russia or Belarus who also have citizenship of another state from receiving visas to enter Czechia.

This would involve an extension of an existing edict barring regular citizens of the two countries from getting visas, except in specified humanitarian cases.

The Czech cabinet is due on Wednesday to discuss the Ministry of Foreign Affairs proposal, under which the freshly modified regulation would remain in place until the end of March 2024.

Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs | Photo: Martin Vaniš,  Radio Prague International

At the same time officials are proposing more exceptions to a rule under which Ukrainians cannot apply at Czech diplomatic missions in their own country for visas to Czechia.

Currently such exceptions are only granted in the case of applicants for study stays who have received temporary protection visas in another EU state or have applied for one.

If ministers rubberstamp the new proposals, other reasons will also be accepted: the reuniting of families, scientific research, applications for permanent residence from ethnic Czechs, and applications for “blue cards”, which are intended for skilled workers in highly sought after professions.

In the last mentioned case, only holders of temporary protection status in other EU countries, or those who have applied for it, may avail of the opportunity.

Since last October, even Russians with a Schengen visa issued for the purpose of tourism, sport or culture by any European Union state have not been able to travel to Czechia.

Author: Ian Willoughby
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