The issue of introduction of visa regime with Russia is very complicated, but the Ukrainian side will be able to start the respective procedures if the government decides so. Maryana Betsa, the spokeswoman of Ukraine’s Foreign Ministry said that during the hot telephone line with the audience of one of Ukrainian newspapers.
‘This matter is really complicated; the Ministry, however, will be ready to implement the visa regime, if there’s respective political decision. We should approach our visa regime strategy very carefully, in an adjusted and balanced way’, Betsa said.
The official explained that there are several major points to be remembered in this regard.
‘First of all, there are three to four million Ukrainians in Russia. Secondly, if we impose visa free regime, and Russia, say, does the same in the occupied Crimea, who would Ukrainians go there? That’s our territory, after all; we’re not going to go to Crimea with visas. Thirdly, there is an uncontrolled part of the state border, which Russia uses to send weapons, manpower and vehicles to the militant-held territory of Donbas,’ Betsa marked.
According to her, there is also a matter of technical readiness of the Ministry. ‘Of course, if we introduce the visa regime, we’re going to need more people, much more staff who would be working in Russia to make it possible for citizens to get the visa. We’ll also need more equipment for that,’ the Ukrainian official explained.
Currently, the Ukrainian Parliament assesses the opportunities to vote for the bill that imposes visa-free regime with Russia. However, this week, the issue is not even on the Parliament’s agenda.