Turkish citizens no longer have visa-free entry to Russia

Russia suspended the visa-free policy with Turkey effective the 1st of January 2016. The Presidential decree suspending the visa-free policy with Turkey is now in force. As noted by RSN Ankara, in response to Moscow's decision, Turkey is now refusing visas for Russian citizens. The bilateral visa-free agreement has been in place since 2011.

As previously reported, Russian authorities announced the abolition of the visa-free regime after a Russian Su-24 bomber was shot down by the Turkish Air Force on November 24th. One of the pilots was killed by ground fire and another Russian serviceman was killed during the rescue operation of the second pilot.

On the 27th of November, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Sergey Lavrov, stated that Russia was suspending the operation of the visa-free regime between Russia and Turkey effective the 1st of January 2016. On the 28th of November, Russian President, Vladimir Putin signed a decree, “On measures to ensure security of the Russian Federation and protect Russian citizens against criminal and other illegal acts and on the application of special economic measures against Turkey."

The document requires visas for Turkish citizens wishing to enter Russia, bans charter flights between Russia and Turkey and prohibits Russian tour operators from arranging travel to Turkey. Visa restrictions will not affect Turkish citizens who already have a temporary residency permit or a residency permit in the Russian Federation as well as those who are sent to work on diplomatic missions.

It should be noted that Turkish products have begun to disappear from the shelves of Russian shops. The price of fruits and vegetables has risen over 4% since Turkey became an enemy of Russia. A number of travel agencies, which provide tours in Turkey, have had their licences revoked.

  Russia, turkey, visa-free regime, suspension, Su-24