The United Arab Emirates' decision to remove the visa ban on Lebanese nationals is a huge win for Lebanon's economy since it's highly dependent on remittances from its citizens working in the UAE.
The United Arab Emirates has lifted a visa ban on Lebanese nationals following a temporary suspension over security concerns, Lebanon’s foreign minister said on Friday,
Lebanese citizens have been reporting in recent weeks that visas for Lebanese outside the UAE were not being granted and travel agents said they were unable to request UAE visas for Lebanese nationals through the usual online system.
A UAE official on Thursday told Reuters that temporary restrictions were in place in response to security concerns but that they would be lifted in coming days.
Lebanese foreign minister Abdallah Bou Habib told Reuters he had been informed on Thursday evening by Lebanon’s ambassador to the UAE that visa access would be “reinstated” for Lebanese starting the following day.
But one travel agent said on Friday the change was not yet reflected in the online request system and that “many visa requests are still pending”.
Thousands of Lebanese nationals are employed in the UAE and send remittances to their families back home, where an economic crisis has locked most depositors out of their bank accounts and pushed more than 80% of the population into poverty.
(Reporting by Maya Gebeily, Editing by William Maclean and Angus MacSwan)
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Photo credit: The UAE lifted a visa ban on Lebanese nationals following a temporary suspension over security concerns. Pictured is Dubai International Airport as seen in 2019. Source: Flickr/Charles https://www.flickr.com/photos/charles79/48696260208 Charles / Flickr