Egypt to require biometric visas from visiting EU officials

European officials and diplomats will be asked to show biometric visas before entering Egypt, the Foreign Ministry said Tuesday.

A ministry statement said the new measure imposed by Foreign Minister Mohamed Kamel Amr comes as part of the Schengen Agreement, a treaty that created a zone in Europe about which people can move freely.

The biometric visa process will require European officials to submit a digital photo and fingerprints for approval. The same process is required for all other applicants for Egyptian visas.

Egyptian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Amr Roshdy said Egyptian embassies and consulates in Schengen Area countries have been supplied with devices used to process biometric visas. He added that technical teams have also been sent to those embassies and consulates to train their employees in using the technology.

Holders of diplomatic and private passports will be required to contain biometric visas starting 15 January, pending a final decision from the ministry, Roshdy said.

Visa applicants will have to go in person to Egyptian diplomatic missions in their countries to be photographed and submit their fingerprints for the database, which will be used to identify applicants when they arrive in Egypt, Roshdy said.

Translated from Al-Masry Al-Youm

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