London: April 5
The UK has announced today, Thursday, the re-opening of a full visa service in Libya. The UK Visa Application . . .[restrict]Centre in Tripoli, which closed in February 2011, is now back in action.
Until now, the nearest centre for Libyans wanting UK visas was Tunis.
In a statement, the UK’s Minister for North Africa, Alistair Burt, said:
“I am delighted that Libyans wishing to travel to the UK can now apply for their visa in Tripoli.
“This move will further enhance the growing relationship between our two countries and will promote stronger political, economic and cultural ties. There has been sustained progress in all these areas over the past six months and I am confident this will continue. Better transportation is an important driver of this, and I look forward to the resumption of direct flights between the UK and Libya as soon as possible.”
From today, Libyans will be able to apply for the full range of visas: including for business, education, family visits or tourism.
The visa centre is also issuing Direct Airside Transit Visas (DATV). Under new UK visa rules announced on March 29, Libyans transiting through the UK (unless travelling to or from the US, Canada, Australia or New Zealand) require a DATV. The new rule also applies to Egyptian and Syrian passport holders.
Direct flights between Tripoli and London resume on May 1, when British Airways starts a thrice-weekly service.
BA’s restart comes despite the UK government continuing to advise British citizens against all but essential travel to Tripoli, Benghazi and other coastal town and against travel to all other areas of Libya.