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Georgia Unilaterally Cancels Visa-Free Travel With Iran

TBILISI -- Georgia's Foreign Ministry says Tbilisi has revoked visa-free entry for Iranians.

The ministry announced on July 2 that, effective the previous day, Iranian citizens must obtain visas to enter Georgian territory.

Georgia and Iran agreed in 2010 to visa-free travel for short visits in a move that saw trade flourish and the number of Iranians flocking to Georgia grow fourfold.

In recent months, two delegations from the U.S. Treasury have visited Georgia to discuss escalating fears that Iran may be using its growing business links with Georgia to skip international sanctions.

Georgian Justice Minister Tea Tsulukani responded at the time by saying that Iranian businesses operating in Georgia are under "strict control," promising to investigate the claims.

Tehran has not yet revoked visa-free rules for the Georgian citizens.

Based on reporting by AFP and RFE/RL's Georgian Service

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