Latvia announced the forced expulsion of Russians who failed the language test
Russian citizens will be forcibly expelled from Latvia if they fail the state language exam, which is necessary to renew the permanent residence permit (permit), RUS informs TV.net, citing official statements.
According to the amendment to the Immigration Act, residence permits previously issued to Russians will expire after September 1, 2023. To extend the documents, it is necessary to submit a document confirming knowledge of the state language and an application for permanent status to the Office for Citizenship and Migration (PMLP) EU resident.
Currently, just over 8,000 Russian citizens have registered for the exam, says Liene Voronenko, head of the State Center for Educational Content (VISC). They must pass the tests by the end of May with the possibility of retaking the exam in June-July. Other Russians will be able to apply for tests from June 1.
Since the adoption of the amendment to the law on immigration, 3,016 Russian citizens have applied for an extension of their residence permit, including 1,577 people over 75 who do not have to pass a language test, says the head of PMLP Myra Rose.
So far, 163 Russians have been granted residence permits, and in seven cases their application has been refused. Also 24 people applied for a temporary residence permit, which does not require a language test.
Forced expulsion decisions will be the last resort in situations where people voluntarily fail to comply with a request to leave the country, said Marek Choniavko, head of the Department for Returns and Asylum. According to him, all persons will be granted the right to appeal against the expulsion decision to the court, and during this time the execution of the decision will be suspended.
At the same time, Khonyavko stressed that the Latvian border guard has experience in forcibly expelling foreigners and can expel a large number of people from the country in a short time.
Due to the lack of passenger transport, Russians are to be transported to land border crossings with Russia. Moreover, if the Russian side does not accept them for any reason, they will be sent to third countries, including those that have visa-free travel with Russia.
Earlier, in Lithuania, neighboring Latvia, the acceptance of applications for citizenship of the republic from citizens of Russia and Belarus was suspended. It also stopped accepting applications from Russians and Belarusians for a temporary residence permit in the country. The relevant bill was adopted in the first reading.