Russian and Belarusian authorities are in talks over the scrapping of the visa-free regime between Belarus and Georgia, a deputy head of Russia's immigration service said Tuesday.
Starting September 28, Russia stopped issuing visas to all citizens of Georgia. On Monday, it suspended travel and postal links with the South Caucasus country, including air, rail, road, sea, and bus services. The move followed a diplomatic row last week over Tbilisi's decision to arrest four Russian servicemen on suspicion of espionage. The four were released to visiting OSCE representatives later Monday.
'Georgian citizens arrive in Russia [without obtaining Russian visas] by train from Belarus,' Mikhail Tyurkin said. 'We are discussing the issue and believe it will be resolved shortly.'
Experts have estimated the number of illegal Georgian immigrants in Russia at around 300,000.