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Russia denies entry to ‘visa-free’ Israeli visitors in apparent tit for tat

Russia denies entry to ‘visa-free’ Israeli visitors in apparent tit for tat

Dozens of Israeli visitors were denied entry into Russia and detained at Moscow Domodedovo Airport’s passport control today for alleged ‘violation of migration regulations’.

46 Israeli citizens were detained for several hours at the airport by Russian border guards who demanded entry visas from the Israelis – an extremely odd demand, since the citizens of the two countries enjoy visa-free travel.

Israel’s Foreign Ministry said it was looking into the matter. About half of those delayed at the airport were let into the country by Wednesday afternoon.

An Israeli delegation is expected to arrive in Russia on Thursday for “consular consultations,” which were scheduled in advance. Jerusalem believes that the detention of Israeli tourists at the Moscow airport is “Russia’s way to convey a message to Israel ahead of the talks”.

Russian authorities have complained to Israel recently over the treatment of Russian tourists at Ben-Gurion Airport. The Russian Embassy in Israel said that over 5,700 tourists were barred entry by Israel this year.

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