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Georgia Not Allowing Some Iranians To Enter The Country

Georgia -- Shota Rustaveli International Airport, Tbilisi. File photo

The Iranian embassy in Georgia has confirmed reports on December 2 about the deportation or entry ban of dozens of Iranian citizens from the Caucasus country.

Georgia is one of the countries in Iran’s vicinity that has visa free travel for Iranians and many visit the country or even choose to obtain residence permits and live in the Georgian capital Tbilisi.

Earlier Fars news agency had reported that Georgia has been stopping Iranian travelers at its airport or ports of entry in the last few weeks, but the trend has accelerated in recent days, reaching 46 deportations.

Fars said 18 Iranians, with return tickets and travel insurance, were not allowed to enter Georgia on November 30 and were put on a flight back to Iran.

The report also says that the new tough policy towards Iranians might be the result of Salome Zurabishvili’s election as Georgia’s new president who “has a tough immigration policy”.

Fars quotes witnesses who say Georgian border security officers randomly pick out visitors arriving on flights from Iran and after an interview tell them they are not allowed to enter Georgia and must return.

The Iranian embassy in Tbilisi says that it is pursuing the issue with Georgian authorities and asking for clarification of immigration laws and regulations and satisfactory explanation for the deportations.