Estonia clarifies visa restrictions for Russians that enter into force on 19 September

The Estonian government has published an official clarification of visa restrictions for Russian citizens that enter into force on 19 September.

The document notes that the same restrictions will be in force in Latvia, Lithuania and Poland. From 19 September, entry to those four countries will be forbidden to all short-term Schengen visa holding Russian citizens whose aim is tourism, sports, culture, visiting friends or family regardless of their country of destination or the country that issued the visa. However, there are several exceptions:

  • for Russian nationals visiting family members or co-parents of minor children living in the Schengen area on a valid legal basis;
  • Russian nationals with a short-stay visa and registered employment in Estonia;
  • those with a student visa;
  • people directly employed in the international transport of goods and passengers;
  • dissidents and people entering the countries on humanitarian grounds.

Yesterday, Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania and Poland announced that they would ban entry to Russian nationals with Schengen visas from 19 September. The document notes that the ban does not extend towards dissidents, family members, humanitarian visa owners and persons with residence permits. An exception will also be made for diplomats and people involved in transportation of cargo.

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