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Post: Belgian embassy suspends short-stay visa applications


Belgian Embassy building in Moscow. archive photo

The Belgian Embassy in Russia has temporarily stopped short-term visa applications.

MOSCOW, 1 July – RIA Novosti. Belgian Embassy in Russia temporarily from 1 July stoped To accept short-stay visa applications (up to 90 days), only students, work-abroad people and family members can now obtain a visa.

“Due to circumstances beyond our control, the Belgian Embassy is faced with the need to reduce the number of visa applications processed this summer. As a result, only applications from the following categories of citizens will be considered from 1 July: 1. Students leave to study abroad before 31 August” , — Stated in the message on the website of the VFS Global visa centre.

Visa applications will also be considered for those who have a single-permit work visa and plan to enter the country before 31 August, as well as family members who traveled together and left the country before 31 August.

Short-term (up to 90 days) visa applications will not be considered.

This temporary measure will end as soon as the Belgian Embassy can regain its capacity to process all visa applications.

At the end of March, Belgium announced the expulsion of 21 employees of the Russian embassy and trade delegation in Brussels, as well as the consulate general in Antwerp. In Brussels, the Russians were accused of participating in espionage activities that allegedly threatened the security of the kingdom. Diplomats were given 15 days to leave the country. Russian Ambassador to Belgium Alexander Tokovinin denied the accusations as unfounded.

In April, Belgian Ambassador to Moscow Mark Michielsen was summoned to the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in connection with Brussels’ decision to expel 21 employees of Russian foreign missions in Belgium, which was strongly protested. In response, Russia declared the employees of the Belgian embassy in Moscow persona non grata, who were ordered to leave the Russian Federation before the end of the day on 3 May.

In May, 12 employees of the Belgian embassy in Russia (only two-thirds of their total), declared persona non grata, fled the country, diplomats and their families flew from Moscow on a Belgian Air Force military transport plane. The embassy continued its work despite the departure of a significant number of employees.

Source: Ria

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