The Dutch Embassy in Kenya warned Kenyan travelers intending to apply for Schengen visas, that they would do so only if they were holders of e-passports, as from December 1, 2019.
"The Schengen Member States, therefore, wish to inform the Kenyan public that from December 1, 2019, only the new East African Community biometric e-Passport can be accepted for Schengen visa applications," a notice on the Dutch Embassy website reads.
According to an official notification from the Kenyan authorities issued to all diplomatic missions, all Kenyan passports except the new East African Community biometric e-Passport, will be rendered invalid from March 1, 2020.
These passports were, in fact, set to become invalid on August 31, but President Uhuru Kenyatta extended the deadline.
According to the notice, Kenyans needed to hold the new East African Community biometric e-passport, or else they would not be eligible to apply for the crucial document that gives one access to over twenty countries within the Shengen area.
The Netherlands had noted at the end of July, that as of December 1, it would no longer accept the old-generation Kenyan passports.
The notice also explained that November 30, was the last day of acceptance for non-biometric Kenyan passports for Schengen visa application, due to the Schengen regulations that all travelers must have a minimum validity of three months in their passports beyond their intended departure from the Schengen when applying for a visa to the Schengen area.
"According to Article 12 (a) of the Regulation (EC) No. 810/2009, commonly known as “Visa Code”, the validity of a travel document shall extend at least three months after the intended date of departure from the territory of the Schengen Member States,” the statement read.
The German embassy in Nairobi had also announced in May 2019 that Kenyans would no longer be able to get visas to Germany with an old generation passport. Germany also warned Rwandan nationals that from June 1 and on, they too would not be able to apply for a Schengen visa to Germany without a biometric e-passport.
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