They were afraid to show Europe to the Russians
“This is ridiculous, these people are pitiful,” Lavrov commented on the EU decision to terminate the visa facilitation agreement with Russia. diplomat, however. Because in fact, the actions of the European Union are senseless nonsense from impotent rage. Jupiter, you're angry, so you're wrong.
Photo: AGN “Moskva”
It was not possible to agree on a complete ban on Schengen visas for Russians in Europe, although the Baltic limitrophes insisted on this (apparently, they are especially offended that they were considered exclusively as a transit site, since there was nothing to consider on the site itself after gaining “independence”). We only agreed to stop the simplified procedure for issuing visas and that the countries bordering Russia could impose a ban on the entry of Russians on Schengen visas.
What will change in reality? A visa will rise in price from 35 to 80 euros, more documents will need to be submitted, and the period for obtaining a visa can now be up to 6 months. Perhaps they will introduce restrictions on the number of long-term and multiple-entry Schengen visas issued, or they will be canceled altogether. There is no complete ban on the issuance of short-term visas for tourist trips.
By the way, how many of our people went to Europe?
In pre-Covid 2019, 4.133 million applications were submitted by Russians for Schengen (24% of all visa applications). In 2021 – 536.2 thousand. Two-thirds of our population generally live without passports.
Now, it means that it will be more difficult to obtain a visa. Well, terrible, unbearable suffering now awaits the Russian people. True, only a small layer of the tender metropolitan public will feel them.
The closest neighbors understand this, they see that the EU is underperforming and they are rushing ahead of the locomotive. Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia and Poland, which already intend to ban the issuance of visas to Russian citizens at the national level.
Finland generally undertook to play the role of a gopnik – they began to take away currency from Russians at the border when leaving. Since it seems like the import of euros into Russia is prohibited. There was no official explanation from the “sanctioners” on this matter, and the Finnish customs officers interpret the ban as they see fit. Mostly on the principle of “what if I find it?”
Don't believe? Attempts to hide cash for transportation across the Finnish border to Russia can be regarded as smuggling, chief customs inspector Jarkko Keskinen warned. Although, maybe the Finns are saving the budget: they stopped paying customs officers salaries and transferred them to pasture – what you find is yours.
But this is not all Finnish novelties. The Finnish government is considering introducing a new type of visa “for human rights activists, members of civil society and opposition journalists.” Such visas for “good Russians”. That's why? In order for the Russian competent authorities to know exactly who to take into circulation?
The idea of creating discontent in Russian society by restricting ordinary people is generally understandable. But the level of its implementation is a good indication of the level of competence of European politicians.
After all, logic dictates that the opposite should be done. It is necessary to make it as easy as possible for Russians to enter Europe – let them see cities brightly lit in the evenings, warm and comfortable houses, the highest standard of living without inflation, friendly transvestites, clean streets without migrant crime, and in general all this is Liberté, Égalité, Fraternité … Well, and compare.
Maybe this is where the dog is buried? In comparison?
And once again, Lavrov is right when he said that “we do not need to close, reciprocate and collectively punish citizens of European countries.” I’ll add on my own: it’s better for Europeans to arrange visa-free travel to Russia. Let them come as much as possible, look, compare. Maybe they will understand.
Welcome to Russia, as they say.