The United States will no longer issue immigrant visas to Russia. Russians who want that visa have to go to Warsaw, Poland. According to the Americans, there is no other solution, because it is impossible for Russian authorities to provide diplomatic services.
“We will not register new arrangements for immigrant visas for Russians in Moscow,” a US State Department spokesman confirmed. Apply for visas at the US Embassy in Warsaw, 1,100 kilometers from Moscow.
The United States has added Russia to its list of countries where the United States has no diplomatic representation or restricts visas to political or security personnel. Only ten countries are on the list, including Washington’s rivals Cuba, Iran, Syria and Venezuela.
According to US officials, the change is the result of Russian regulations. It only allows Americans to work at the embassy. Russians or other nationalities will no longer be allowed to work for a diplomatic post. As a result, the embassy had to push dozens of local staff into the street, it says.
Why are local staff so important to embassies?
In general, embassies support diplomats based on local staff, perform administrative duties, and provide diplomatic services, such as issuing passports. Unlike secondary staff who work in the same embassy for a few years, local staff often serve longer and act as a ‘collective memory’ of diplomatic service.
Ordinary work visas will no longer be issued in May. Now there are only diplomatic or official visas. However, the Russians did not accept the size of the Americans. A foreign affairs spokesman in Moscow called it a “borderline humiliation of sadism.”
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