Cover Osteuropa 2-3/2007

In Osteuropa 2-3/2007

Friendly EU Border
Claims and Reality of EU Visa Policy

Anita Szymborska

Deutsche Fassung


The European Union is always quick to appear on the scene with avowals of sympathy for democracy movements in Eastern Europe. The friendship stops with visa policy, however. Monitoring carried out by the Warsaw-based Stefan Batory Foundation shows that, despite relaxations on paper, visa policy is being used to place enormous hurdles in the way of the citizens of Ukraine, Belarus, Moldova and Russia when it comes to visas for the Schengen area. The new EU member states, first and foremost Poland, see themselves forced to adjust their liberal visa policy vis-à-vis eastern neighbours, so as to conform with the more restrictive Schengen legislation. Even a new agreement between the EU and Ukraine on relaxing visa regulations brings only questionable progress.

(Osteuropa 2-3/2007, pp. 273–284)