BRUSSELS, September 9. /TASS/. The European Commission (EC) has recommended to EU countries to simplify to the utmost the visa issuance process for Russian civil society representatives and "dissidents" up to waiving visa fees for them, according to a document published by the EC on Friday.
The document presents guidelines on visa processing for the Russian citizens after the European Union suspended the visa facilitation agreement with Russia starting on September 12. The EC stressed that visa issuance should be the last priority of the operations of consulates.
"The EU will remain open to Russian visa applicants travelling for essential purposes, including notably family members of EU citizens, journalists, dissidents and civil society representatives," the document reads. The EC notes that EU countries may decide "to reduce or waive the visa fee in certain cases, which could help facilitate travel for journalists, dissidents, pupils, students and researchers.".