Russians fleeing mobilization will not automatically obtain French visas

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A person holds a Russian passport at the Vaalimaa border crossing point between Russia and Finland, in Vaalimaa, Finland September 23, 2022. REUTERS/Janis Laizans

PARIS (Reuters) – French Deputy Minister for European Affairs Laurence Boone said on Wednesday that Russians fleeing their country to avoid drafting into the Russian military would not automatically get visas to stay in France, but that their situation and any security risks would be taken into account. .

“We have limited conditions under which visas can be issued. We will ensure that dissident journalists, people who fight the regime, artists and students can still come here, and we will issue visas on a case-by-case basis, taking into account the security risks,” she said in an interview with franceinfo radio.

Asked whether all deserters from the Russian army would be welcomed on European soil, she indicated that each case would be examined individually and that the procedure for obtaining a visa for the Schengen area would be extended to 40 days instead of the usual 15 in order to conduct an investigation. in the person applying for a visa or political asylum.

“We want to preserve access to political asylum in Europe for people who really need it and avoid security risks,” she said, adding that several countries much closer to Russia want to close their borders completely. Russians wanting to leave their country.

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