Suspend visa-free European Union travel for USA citizens, lawmakers say

Posted March 03, 2017

Four other countries were notified about non-reciprocity in 2014, together with the USA, namely Japan, Canada, Brunei and Australia. Parliament argues that as a result the Commission has been "legally obliged" to take measures.

According to the visa reciprocity mechanism, if a third country does not lift its visa requirements within 24 months of being notified of non-reciprocity, the EU Commission must adopt a delegated act - to which both Parliament and the Council may object - suspending the visa waiver for its nationals for 12 months.

Citizens of Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Poland and Romania still cannot enter USA territory without a visa, while U.S. citizens can travel to all European Union countries visa-free.

"I am glad that the EU Parliament continue to put pressure on the Commission to carry out their obligations until reciprocal visa agreements between the EU and the United States are met. Croatian citizens must have the same rights when they travel to the USA as other European citizens", Croatia's European MET Tonino Picula commented.

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Nekov has referred to the European Union mechanism of reciprocity, according to which if a third country does not lift visas within 24 months since it has been notified by the European Union, the Commission must take legal measures to suspend the visa waiver for its nationals for 12 months. The European Commission has until the summer to enforce the measure.

Whilst countries such as Australia, Brunei and Japan since lifted visa requirements, the USA have failed to act forcing today's vote.

The U.S. was warned along with Canada, Australia, Brunei and Japan.