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11 Dec 2014

House of Representatives ratifies visa abolition agreement with Israel

MINSK, 11 December (BelTA) - Members of the House of Representatives ratified the agreement with Israel on the abolition of visas for holders of national passports on 11 December, BelTA has learned.

The document was signed in Minsk in September 2014. It regulates the visa-free regime, which is introduced on a bilateral basis for citizens of Belarus and Israel who are the holders of valid national passports (except for diplomatic and official). Visa-free order of entry or exit will be applied for a visit or a stay of not more 90 days within 6 months from the date of first entry.

According to Belarus’ Deputy Foreign Minister Elena Kupchina, if a citizen needs to stay in the country for a longer period – for work, commerce, etc., the citizen will need to obtain a visa in advance.

The parties also agreed to retain the right to refuse entry to citizens who are considered undesirable or to shorten their stay in their country.

The agreement is concluded for 1 year and is automatically renewed for successive one-year periods unless one of the parties sends, through diplomatic channels, a written notice of the termination of the document. In such a case the agreement shall cease to have effect on the 90th day after the date of receipt of the notice by the other party.

Taking into account the fact that Russia and Ukraine have already concluded bilateral visa abolition agreements with Israel, and Moldova and Georgia have abolished visas for the citizens of Israel unilaterally, the introduction of a visa-free regime with Belarus will have a very positive political and image effect, in addition to business, trade and economic and human contact benefits,” said Elena Kupchina.

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