October 28, 2016

Russia to suspend its visa-free agreement with Turkey

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has said that Russia is going to null its visa-free agreement with Turkey at the very outser of next year.

Friday’s announcement comes as tensions mount after the downing of a Russian fighter jet by Turkey earlier this week.

Russia has ruled out any military response against NATO member Turkey, but it has pledged broad retaliatory measures targeting entire sectors of the Turkish economy, including tourism, agriculture and investments.

On Thursday, two Turkish businessmen with investments in Russia told Al Jazeera that Russian police have been raiding Turkish companies in different regions of the country and, in some cases, have suspended their operations.

Moscow has also started sending back Turkish trucks loaded with exports at the border and stopped Turkish tourists – who normally do not need visas – entering the country, at least two businessmen said.

“A decision has been made to halt the visa-free regime with Turkey,” Lavrov told reporters after talks with his Syrian counterpart Walid Muallem in Moscow.

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