On 9 November, the Council of the European Union adopted a decision partially suspending the application of the EU-Belarus visa facilitation agreement. This decision is a response to the ongoing hybrid attack launched by the Belarusian regime.
The suspension covers the provisions that waive requirements for documentary evidence, regulate the issuing of multiple entry visas and reduce visa application fees as they apply to officials of the Belarus regime. This decision will not affect ordinary citizens of Belarus, who will continue to enjoy the same benefits under the visa facilitation agreement as they do currently.
The EU-Belarus visa facilitation agreement entered into force on 1 July 2020, in parallel with the EU-Belarus readmission agreement, aiming to enhance people-to-people contacts and sharing values and democratic principles.
On 8 November, Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission, called on EU member states to finally approve the extended sanctions regime on the Belarusian authorities responsible for the hybrid attack using migrants against European countries across the Belarusian border.
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