France dismisses rumors Schengen visa procedures changed for Vietnamese citizens

By Viet Anh    November 27, 2019 | 02:59 pm GMT+7
France dismisses rumors Schengen visa procedures changed for Vietnamese citizens
Schengen visa as an endorsement placed within a passport. Photo acquired by VnExpress.

The French embassy in Hanoi has rejected rumors that Schengen visa procedures for Vietnamese citizens have been tightened following the recent UK tragedy.

39 Vietnamese citizens aged 15-44 being trafficked to the U.K. were found dead in a refrigerated truck last month.

The procedures for Schengen visas for Vietnamese citizens have not been changed, contrary to some rumors, the embassy said in a statement Tuesday. It also said that the time taken to verify visa applications in Vietnam will not exceed 15 days.

The embassy statement was a response to rumors recently spreading on social media that said Vietnamese citizens would suffer from strict visa procedures as European countries tighten up their regulations on the heels of the UK tragedy.

The rumors said that starting November 18, visa applications of citizens from Vietnam and nine other nations have to be verified by 26 Schengen member countries. These applications would be rejected without an explanation if they are not approved by even one country in the bloc.

To get a Schengen visa, Vietnamese citizens have to follow several steps including submitting an application form and documents like notarized copies of English-translated versions of their labour contracts, household registration books, identity cards, and saving books with the balance of VND100 – 200 million ($4,300 – 8,600).

The UK truck tragedy has highlighted the travails Vietnamese citizens might go through and the risks involved when they try to immigrate illegally or fall victims to human traffickers.

So far, British police have arrested seven people for their involvement in the tragedy. Among the suspects is the truck driver Maurice Robinson, 25, of Northern Ireland who pleaded guilty to assisting illegal immigration in a Monday trial, but did not admit to 39 counts of manslaughter he has been charged with.

The bodies of 16 Vietnamese citizens who died in the refrigerated truck were repatriated to Vietnam Wednesday morning.

 
 
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