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UAE reciprocal visas
Gulf News today (25 December 2006) had a report that visa rules were under review - especially for European countries which require UAE nationals to obtain visas before heading there. The beef seems to be that although the UAE grants visas on arrival for EU member countries, those same countries do not have reciprocal rights for UAE citizens (not expat residents) entering those countries - UAE citizens have to go through tough visa application procedures before visiting those countries. Some excerpts from the report:
Dubai: The ministry of foreign affairs has been asked by the Cabinet yesterday to review its reciprocal visa procedures policy in light of "some foreign countries', particularly European," refusal to grant Emiratis the same treatment their nationals get at UAE ports. "We will negotiate with these countries to facilitate the entry of UAE nationals to those countries," Mohammad Hussain Al Sha'ali, Minister State for for Foreign Affairs told Gulf News yesterday. "We will hopefully find a suitable way to do it." ...
... "We receive complaints from UAE citizens and some establishments regarding visa transactions and the stringent terms imposed by those countries on businessmen, students and even patients with urgent cases," Al Sha'ali explained, without specifying those countries ... "In return we expect the same treatment from those countries. We had earlier spoken to them about the necessity to facilitate the entry of UAE nationals but we have not received a suitable response," he said.