U.S. consulates in Russia will resume interviews for limited travel visas next week, U.S. Ambassador Jon Huntsman announced on Monday.
In August, the U.S. Embassy in Russia temporarily suspended processing non-immigrant visas in response to Russia’s decision to expel U.S. diplomats from the country. Russia’s decision followed a wave of U.S. sanctions in July.
“We want Russians to travel to the United States, experience our culture firsthand, study at our universities and do business with U.S. companies,” Ambassador Jon Huntsman said in a video accompanying the Embassy’s press release.
Beginning on Dec. 11, limited interviews for non-immigrant visas to the U.S. will be available at consulates in St. Petersburg, Yekaterinburg and Vladivostok. Non-immigrant visas are issued to travelers visiting the U.S. temporarily, as opposed to applying for permanent residency in the country.
In the video, Huntsman notes that the embassy will continue to operate with a reduced staff, calling it “an unfortunate consequence of Russia’s decision to limit our staffing levels.”