Thanks To U.S. Immigration Policies, Americans May No Longer Freely Travel In Europe

European Union lawmakers wants To End American Exceptionalism

The European Union has had enough of U.S. immigration policies, which are only further tightening under President Donald Trump (decisions that the EU has condemned); it is now considering implementing stricter travel measures to all American travelers. On Thursday, the European Parliament proposed the European Commission force all Americans to apply for visas before they enter European territory; a measure they expect will enter into force “within two months” — before the summer. According to The Telegraph, a European Parliament source said:

“this was a serious negative step in the EU-USA visa war”.

The measure intends to put pressure on the EU executive to put an end to the long visa-dispute between the U.S. and the European Union. Washington has long refused to grant visa-free entry to European citizens from four eastern countries (Bulgaria, Croatia, Poland and Romania) as well as from Cyprus. Citizens from the other 23 member states of the EU can only enter U.S. territory through the visa waiver program. Hence, the EU has called for equal treatment. The statement from the European Parliament demands the EU Commission reintroduce the reciprocity policy and remove America’s long-enjoyed exceptionalism. As explained by the BBC, a notification of non-reciprocity was received in April 2014 and

“Under these rules, “if a third country does not lift its visa requirements within 24 months of being notified of non-reciprocity, the EU Commission must adopt a delegated act… suspending the visa waiver for its nationals for 12 months.”

This means, that the EU is legally obliged to do what the Parliament is asking. However, the EU is aware that imposing a visa restriction would have an economic cost and could hurt Europe’s tourism, this being the major disincentive.

Featured image via Sandy Huffaker/Getty Images News

From Mexico City, Carolina has lived in five different countries, experiences she defines as the most enriching. She has focused her studies and work on international conflicts and international security issues, diplomacy and protocol. Carolina holds two MA degrees and hopes to begin her PhD studies soon.