Belgium favors terminating EU visa issuance to all Russians

World February 24, 15:03

This measure should affect both short-and long-term stays, Secretary of State for Asylum and Migration Sammy Mahdi noted

TASS, February 24. Belgium has come out in favor of the EU terminating visa issuance to all Russians, even students, workers and tourists, Secretary of State for Asylum and Migration Sammy Mahdi told Reuters on Thursday.

"Russia's reckless attack forces us to be careful with Russians who want to come to Belgium. At the moment, Russians are not welcome here, a general visa ban for Russians should not be a taboo," Mahdi said, adding that should affect both short-and long-term stays.

Belgian Prime Minister Alexander de Croo did not comment on this. On Tuesday, de Croo is due to meet with leaders of other EU countries to discuss the expansion of sanctions against Russia.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said in a televised address on Thursday morning that in response to a request by the heads of the Donbass republics he had made a decision to carry out a special military operation in order to protect people "who have been suffering from abuse and genocide by the Kiev regime for eight years." The Russian leader stressed that Moscow had no plans of occupying Ukrainian territories.

When clarifying the developments unfolding, the Russian Defense Ministry reassured that Russian troops are not targeting Ukrainian cities, but are limited to surgically striking and incapacitating Ukrainian military infrastructure. There are no threats whatsoever to the civilian population.

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