Disinfo: Schengen visa refusals violate Crimeans’ human rights


The refusal by a number of EU member states to issue Schengen visas to Crimeans whose passports were issued after 2014 is a violation of human rights. This practice aims to punish the residents of Crimea for their will to self-determination, expressed during the 2014 referendum in which 97 percent of the peninsula’s inhabitants voted to reject the coup in Kyiv and rejoin Russia.


Recurring pro-Kremlin disinformation narrative about the illegal annexation of Crimea.

Disinformation message appeared after a statement of the head of the European Union’s mission in Moscow, Marcus Ederer.  On July 22, he stressed that the European Union did not recognise and will not recognise the Russian annexation of Crimea, therefore Russian passports issued in Crimea by the Russian authorities after the annexation will not be recognized and accepted when applying for a Schengen visa. Ederer advised residents of the peninsula to visit European countries using their Ukrainian documents.

With the annexation of the Ukrainian Crimea, Russia forcibly imposed the citizenship of the occupying country on two million Crimeans. Crimeans remain citizens of Ukraine, who can obtain a biometric passport and freely take advantage of the visa-free regime with the European Union by visiting a wide list of states without obtaining any additional visas.

The claim that the so-called Crimean referendum was an expression of Crimeans' self-determination is not true. The so-called referendum was organised by a self-proclaimed Crimean leadership lacking democratic legitimacy and installed by armed Russian military personnel following the seizure of public buildings.On March 27, 2014 the UN General Assembly adopted a resolution calling on states, international organizations and specialized agencies not to recognize any change in the status of Crimea or the Black Sea port city of Sevastopol, and to refrain from actions or dealings that might be interpreted as such. In March 2019 on the fifth anniversary of Crimea's annexation, the EU reiterated its position of non-recognition of illegal annexation of Crimea and Sevastopol.

You can read more on the topic here, here and here.



  • Reported in: Issue 160
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 30/07/2019
  • Language/target audience: English
  • Country: Russia, Ukraine
  • Keywords: Schengen, EU, Human rights, Manipulated elections/referendum, Coup, Russophobia, Euromaidan, Referendum, Crimea
  • Outlet: Sputnik News
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