Libya lifted a visa ban on citizens of 25 European countries on Saturday after EU president in Spain said a Swiss-instigated visa blacklist against 188 Libyans in those countries had been scrapped.

The end to the visa ban and the Schengen zone blacklist will likely defuse a crisis that has threatened to damage growing business ties between Europe and oil exporter Libya.

“In the interests of strengthening its cooperation with the European Union, Libya lifts the restrictions it earlier imposed on the citizens of the Schengen zone,” Libya’s Foreign Ministry said in a communique carried by JANA, the state news agency.

Spain‘s foreign ministry had earlier issued a statement announcing the visa blacklist had been to ”Libya expresses its appreciation at the European Union for this move,” JANA quoted the Foreign Ministry statement as saying. ”This is a defeat for Switzerland by means of collective European action. Libya accepts the EU decision…”

Libya stopped issuing visas to citizens from the Schengen borderless travel zone in retaliation for Switzerland, a Schengen member, barring entry to 188 Libyan citizens including the country‘s leader Muammar Gaddafi and members of his family… read more


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