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Viktor Chumak, non-factional MP
I think that we should conduct a discussion here, because there are so many consequences: social, humanitarian, economic, political. This is not an easy question. If we introduce a visa regime, we must take further steps and prohibit the movement, for example, of Russian citizens on the border, 1,000 km to the right and left of the conflict area. If we speak further, then we must talk about limiting diplomatic relations, political, and so on. Therefore, these are half measures.
I think that criminals do not cross Ukrainian checkpoints, they find other ways.
Dmytro Dobrodomov, non-factional MP
It is necessary to do this. I do not see any problems in this. If we are at war with the country, then we must take appropriate steps. What we started to do it’s latу but better late than never. Narodnyi Front party is an initiator of this, it's very good, I welcome it. Why they did not initiated the process when their leader was a prime minister? I am perplexed that many people from Western Ukraine, where I was born, work in Russia. I cannot understand. Even if it happened that there is no jobs for them in Ukraine, there is neighboring Poland, there are many proposals. Although I'm a crazy opponent of our people who are going to work abroad. The government must provide a clear program on how it should ensure employment of our people in Ukraine.
Oleh Lyashko, Radical Party
I know that most of our people do not support this, but I believe that diplomatic relations with Russia should be broken. This is nonsense. Russia is an aggressor country that has occupied part of our territory, and we have diplomatic relations with them. There is no such thing anywhere in the world. Therefore, we believe that it is a need to stop diplomatic relations.
Vadym Novinsky, Opposition block
I think that our entire faction will vote against this decision. Because the introduction of a visa regime with Russia will not bring anything good for Ukraine. As we know, lately the flow of visitors from Russia to Ukraine has decreased very much. Russian citizens will not be affected in any way. Those who have traveled here will receive a visa and travel to Ukraine in exactly the same way. But in the case of the introduction of countervailing sanctions by the Russian side, these sanctions can concern both visas and worsening, tightening in the economy, economic sanctions against Ukrainian companies. In this case, it will affect at least 2-2.5 million people who travel annually to the Russian Federation and due to lack of jobs in Ukraine they go to the Russian Federation, earn money there and thus feed their families. According to the NBU, in 2015 the amount of money transfers from Russia to Ukraine was about $ 2 billion. After the introduction of sanctions by Russian payment systems, this amount was reduced, but other payment systems were used to transfer money.
Maksym Burbak, Narodnyi Front
I do not want to witness the repeat of that shameful situation when the Verkhovna Rada’s decree on appealing to the National Security and Defense Council for the implementation of sanctions related to Yanukovych's entourage was failed. Therefore, if there is an appeal for the introduction of a visa regime with the Russian Federation, it should be introduced after gathering votes.
Yesterday we heard from the media that there are still discussions in the Petro Poroshenko’s Block. When the two factions of the coalition will come out with a productive decision, then we must bring it to the session hall.
Oleksiy Mushak, Petro Poroshenko’s Block
There are several opinions on this matter. First, when we talk about visa-free regime, then let's analyze what conditions we have. We have 420 km of uncontrolled border with Russia. Speaking about visa-free regime in times when you cannot get to the territory of Ukraine without problems, because the Ukrainian authorities do not control it – it’s a fiction. Second, we must look at the economic matters, yet there are our workers in Russia. If you approve the visa regime, you have to create jobs here, run a land market or some other things that would give the workers the opportunity to earn money here. Third opinion, if we introduce visa regime, and we see an intensive movement both from Ukraine to Russia and from Russia to Ukraine, then it is necessary to create visa centers ... There was a compromise proposal of Igor Gryniv, which the majority of MPs favorably accepted, that since we received a visa-free regime with the EU, and Ukrainians who have a biometric passport can enter the EU without a visa, then let's introduce the same measure regarding to Russian Federation, and those Russian citizens who have a biometric passport will also have the same visa-free enter to Ukraine, and those who do not have, will have to obtain visas.
Mustafa Dzhemilev, Petro Poroshenko’s Block
People with Ukrainian passports can enter mainland part of Ukraine through the occupied Crimea, so they do not need visa regime. If we are talking about Russian citizens - of course, there should be a visa regime for them. And also there are, of course, unpleasant moments - our people, who work in Russia, despite we have a war from the Russian side. Therefore, it is necessary to take into account some difficult issues.