EU Furious at Russian Travel Blacklist

EU Furious at Russian Travel BlacklistEU Furious at Russian Travel Blacklist

The European Union responded angrily to Russia’s entry ban against 89 European politicians, officials and military leaders.

Those banned are believed to include Secretary-General of the EU Council Uwe Corsepius, and former British Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg. Russia shared the list after several requests by diplomats, the EU said.

The EU called the ban “arbitrary and unjustified” and said no explanation had been provided. The EU said it had asked repeatedly for the list of those banned, but nothing had been provided until now.

“The list with 89 names has now been shared by the Russian authorities. We don’t have any other information on legal basis, criteria and process of this decision,” an EU spokesman said on Saturday.

A Russian Foreign Ministry official would not confirm the names of those barred, but said that the ban was a result of EU sanctions against Russia.

“Why it was precisely these people who entered into the list... is simple, it was done in answer to the sanctions campaign which has been waged in relation to Russia by several states of the European Union,” the official, who was not named, told Russian news agency TASS.

The official said Moscow had previously recommended that all diplomats from countries that imposed sanctions on Russia should check with Russian consular offices before travelling to see if they were banned.

“Just one thing remains unclear: Did our European coworkers want these lists to minimize inconveniences for potential ‘denied persons’ or to stage another political show?” he said.