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Latvia: Denmark to End Visa Requirements for Latvians

Copenhagen, 14 August 1996 (RFE/RL) -- Denmark will end visa requirements for Latvian citizens by the end of the year, says Danish Interior Minister Birte Weiss.

Danish law empowers the minister to decide visa requirements without parliamentary approval.

Weiss returned last week from official visits to the three Baltic republics, Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia. He was quoted by newspapers in Copenhagen this morning as saying that visas for Latvians can be eliminated for two reasons: Latvias civil administration is in order and Denmark has developed mechanisms to deal with criminals and bogus asylum-seekers coming from the Baltic states.

Denmark eliminated visa requirements for Lithuanians in 1992 and for Estonians in 1993.

The Scandinavian countries do not subscribe to the Schengen agreement, which generally provides for unrestricted travel among countries of the European Union.