The European Union has announced it won't accept Russian travel documents issued in Ukraine and Georgia. The European Council said in a statement on November 10 that the decision is a "response" to Russia’s "unprovoked and unjustified military aggression against Ukraine" and Russia's practice of issuing Russian international passports to residents of the occupied regions. "It also follows Russia’s unilateral decision to recognize the independence of the Georgian territories of Abkhazia and South Ossetia in 2008," it added. The move still needs to be formally signed off by the European Parliament and EU member states.
"This decision is a response to Russia’s unprovoked and unjustified military aggression against Ukraine and Russia’s practice of issuing Russian international passports to residents of the occupied regions. It also follows Russia’s unilateral decision to recognise the independence of the Georgian territories of Abkhazia and South Ossetia in 2008.
Russian travel documents issued in, or to persons resident in, Russian-occupied regions in Ukraine or breakaway territories in Georgia will not be accepted as valid travel documents for obtaining a visa or crossing the borders of the Schengen area.
Russian travel documents issued in these regions are already not recognised, or in the process of not being recognised, by EU member states. This decision aims to set out a common approach, ensure the proper functioning of the external border and common visa policies and safeguard the security of EU member states," the statement reads.
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