Preventing Russians from traveling to hand in their passports within five days

Russian passports at the Goznak printing plant in Moscow on July 11, 2019. Photograph: Maxim Shemetov/Reuters. Obtaining licensing rights

Dec 11 (Reuters) – Russians banned from traveling abroad will have to surrender their passports to authorities within five days after being notified, according to a government decree that takes effect on Monday.

According to Russian law, authorities can impose travel bans on conscripts, employees of the Federal Security Service (FSB), convicts, or people with access to state secrets or “information of special interest,” among others.

The returned passport will be stored by the authorities that issued it, such as the Ministry of Interior or Ministry of Foreign Affairs authorities.

After the travel ban is lifted, the passport can be returned upon completion of the application, according to the government decision.

The decision stipulates that those whose right to travel has been temporarily restricted on the basis of conscription for military service or alternative civilian service will also have to present a military ID card with proof that they have completed service.

In March, the Financial Times, citing unnamed sources familiar with the matter, reported that Russian security services were confiscating the passports of senior officials and executives in government companies to prevent travel abroad.

(Reported by Lydia Kelly in Melbourne – Prepared by Muhammad for the Arabic Bulletin) Edited by Jamie Freed

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