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Senator Tells EU to Fight Crisis by Easing Visas

A senator on Tuesday urged the European Union to tackle its economic troubles by easing visas for Russian citizens.

Vadim Tulpanov, who represents St. Petersburg in the Federation Council, said Russians should be allowed visa-free travel to Baltic ports for up to 72 hours, Interfax reported.

"I think that visa-free travel for Russian tourists would help bring the European economy out of the crisis," he said, adding that he had asked Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania to take up the issue with EU leadership.

Tulpanov noted that EU citizens arriving by ferry in St. Petersburg are allowed to stay for 72 hours without visas and said Russians should be afforded the same right.

The Kremlin has made visa-free travel with the EU a top priority in recent years, but with little success.

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