Canada may soon change visitor requirements for citizens of several closely allied countries.
Citizens of countries such as the United Kingdom, Germany and South Korea have for years been free to enter Canada without obtaining permission or visas. However, that could all change in the near future thanks to the 2011 U.S.-Canada border agreement.
The agreement, which was part of a wider U.S. border security initiative in the wake of 9/11, is part of a long-term coordination effort between the two countries that has been slow to get off the ground. Most recently, a proposal to share immigration information between the two nations was tabled, yet little is known about how much is being shared or the effectiveness of the strategy thus far.
The new proposal would require that visitors travelling to Canada by air obtain permission to land before their arrival. American citizens would be exempted. Travellers to the U.S. have already been dealing with similar policies since 2008.
The government description of the policy suggests that it could be effective in identifying and deterring security threats. Officials would pre-screen candidates for links to war crimes, human-rights violations and other rights-related crime.
So far there has been little detail on when or how the new policy might be implemented.
Source: Wall Street Journal