H.E. Dr. Kevin Isaac and H.E. Yamina Karitanyi
H.E. Dr. Kevin Isaac and H.E. Yamina Karitanyi
H.E. Dr. Kevin Isaac and H.E. Yamina Karitanyi

St. Kitts and Nevis, Rwanda governments sign mutual visa waiver agreement

LONDON – The governments of St. Kitts and Nevis and Rwanda today signed a mutual visa waiver agreement in which the two countries agreed to allow their citizens to travel to each other’s country without a visa.

Rwanda, officially known as the Republic of Rwanda, will host the next meeting of Commonwealth Heads of Government (CHOGM) in 2020. Rwanda is a landlocked country in Central and East Africa and one of the smallest countries on the African mainland. Although it endured a tragic history of genocide in 1994, Rwanda has been transformed in two decades, continues to modernise, and is now considered one of Africa’s safest and most stable countries, with annual growth rates of between 6-8 percent.

Following a successful CHOGM and an initiative of St. Kitts and Nevis Foreign Minister the Honourable Mark Brantley, St. Kitts and Nevis High Commissioner to the United Kingdom His Excellency Dr Kevin M. Isaac and his colleague, High Commissioner of Rwanda to the United Kingdom Her Excellency Yamina Karitanyi, toasted the occasion as an historic moment in the development of their countries relationship.

This agreement fulfills a commitment of the government of St. Kitts and Nevis to strengthen its international partnerships and improve relations across the globe. This is also in keeping with the foreign minister’s belief that “Africa remains an untapped resource for south-south cooperation and that St. Kitts and Nevis is willing to be that bridge to narrow the divide.”

Once all the requisite internal procedures have been completed, the agreement will enter into force ensuring that citizens of St. Kitts and Nevis and Rwanda who hold a valid diplomatic, official or ordinary passports can enter, exit and transit each other’s territories free of visa requirements for up to 90 days.

The high commissioners of Rwanda and St. Kitts and Nevis extended invitations to visit each other’s country. High Commissioner Karitanyi stressed that the new Rwanda Air offers up to three flights a week from London to the Rwandan capital, Kigali, which offers a wonderful opportunity to explore her country. She also expressed a willingness to travel to St. Kitts and Nevis. High Commissioner Isaac thanked his colleague for the invitation to visit Rwanda, which he hopes to accept soon, and promised to work with her to expedite her visit to St. Kitts and Nevis.