The European Parliament voted on 20 October and agreed not to accept Russian travel documents issued in the occupied regions of Georgia and Ukraine. 540 MEPs voted for, 6 against, and 36 abstained.
The decision follows an agreement reached by EU Ambassadors on 12 October, according to which, Russian travel documents issued in, or to persons residing in, Russian-occupied Georgian or Ukrainian regions will not be accepted as valid travel documents for obtaining a visa or crossing the borders of the Schengen area.
The next step will be for the European Parliament and the Council of the European Union to negotiate the final legislative act. Once that will be adopted by both institutions, it will enter into force the day after it is published in the Official Journal of the EU.
The MEPs noted in their decision that with Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea, Sevastopol, Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson, and Zaporizhzhia, and the EU’s condemnation of Russia’s recognition of occupied Abkhazia and Tskhinvali/S. Ossetia’s independence, EU member states, and EEA allies “should no longer accept travel documents issued by Russia in these regions.”
The MEPs also stated that the European Commission should consult EU member states and draw up a list of Russian travel documents that should not be accepted going forward.