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Russia, Israel to switch to visa-free regime in Sept. - embassy

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Russia and Israel will be able to switch to a visa-free regime at the end of September, the Russian embassy in Israel said on Sunday.
TEL AVIV, June 22 (RIA Novosti) - Russia and Israel will be able to switch to a visa-free regime at the end of September, the Russian embassy in Israel said on Sunday.

The embassy's statement came after Israel had completed formal procedures to ratify an agreement on mutual visa-free travel between Russia and Israel signed on March 20.

Under the deal, the document will come into effect 90 days after being ratified by the parliaments of both countries. Russia ratified the agreement within a week after the agreement was signed.

Analysts said visa-free travel between the two countries would be both economically beneficial as well as logical. Immigrants from Russia and other former Soviet republics account for over 1 million of Israel's 7 million citizens, meaning that visits to friends and relatives are likely to rise dramatically.

More than 100,000 Russian tourists visited Israel last year, which is third place after the United States and France.

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