Moscow expects that the European Union’s plans to introduce coronavirus vaccine passports won’t discriminate against Russian nationals, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said at a press conference on Tuesday.
“At our level, we informed our colleagues in the European Union that we expected them to make decisions that will not discriminate against Russian nationals,” he pointed out.
The Russian top diplomat emphasized that the European Union’s move to introduce “vaccine passports” could lead to forced vaccination and would violate the principle that inoculation should be voluntary.
“It seems that the initiative runs counter to the rules of democracy because EU countries decided that vaccination would be voluntary,” Lavrov noted. “It means that people will be forced to get vaccinated in order to be able to travel, and people in the European Union can hardly imagine their life without traveling between countries,” he added.
“We’ll see how it plays out. I hope that a decision will be made based on the positions of member states. The principle that vaccination should be voluntary is very important,” the Russian foreign minister stressed.
On Monday, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen announced plans to introduce coronavirus vaccination certificates.