People, Travel

EU Approves Visa-Free Travel for Ukrainians

EU Approves Visa-Free Travel for UkrainiansEU Approves Visa-Free Travel for Ukrainians

The Council of the European Union adopted on May 11 a regulation on visa liberalization for Ukrainian citizens travelling to the EU for short-term stays, fulfilling a long-held promise the bloc had made to help cement Kiev’s pro-EU orientation.

According to, the measure has given the administration of President Petro Poroshenko a boost as he seeks closer ties with the EU, much to the dismay of Russia.

“Ukrainian citizens with a biometric passport travelling to the EU for up to 90 days [in any 180-day period] for business, tourist or family purposes will no longer need a visa,” the council said in a statement.

“These measures will not apply to Ireland and the United Kingdom, in accordance with the protocols annexed to the EU treaties. The visa regime of these member states remains subject to their national legislation.”

The visa-free regime will come into force on June 11, subject to approval by the President of the European Parliament Antonio Tajani and the representative of the country presiding over the union (Malta). Poroshenko said the move "finalized [Ukraine's break] with the Russian Empire", adding that his country is "returning to its historic place among European countries", according to Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Alexei Meshkov said visa-free travel is a "carrot on a string" that does little in the way of easing the current system in Ukraine, Sputnik reported.


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