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I imagine that lack of extradition treaties is somewhat of a hindrance for establishing visa-free travel between countries, on the argument that if (potential) criminals can enter freely (and then do some crime) one should be at least able to get them extradited thereafter. (Of course, visas are not a perfect protection against criminals entering.)

So, are there examples of visa-free travel agreements between countries that have no mutual extradition agreements whatsoever? In particular any such examples involving the US or EU countries?

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  • Most visa-free travel is the result of unilateral action rather than bilateral agreement.
    – phoog
    Commented Jun 24, 2022 at 23:13
  • @phoog: I can imagine poor country giving visa-free travel to rich country to encourage tourism and what not, and so not asking for much if anything in return. Which is why I also asked if examples involving the not so poor US or EU countries exist (as the visa-free zone/giver). Commented Jun 24, 2022 at 23:25
  • So, apparently Ukraine had visa-free regime for Russian citizens. reuters.com/world/europe/… I think Russia doesn't extradite to anywhere, including Ukraine. It is kinda odd that Ukraine apparently took 3 months after the Feb invasion to suspend that regime though, so I'm not sure how widespread/operational it still was... Commented Jun 24, 2022 at 23:38
  • Russia has ratified the European Convention on Extradition in 1999. It's one of the treaties under the auspices of the Council of Europe, but there are four non-member state signatoires: Israel, Russia, South Africa and Republic of Korea.
    – ccprog
    Commented Jun 25, 2022 at 0:43
  • @ccprog: they registered a fairly giant exception upon signature, as far as I can tell theguardian.com/world/2007/may/22/russia.lukeharding Commented Jun 25, 2022 at 0:58

3 Answers 3

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It is obviously too difficult to list all examples, but Canada allows visa-free access to passport holders of the following countries without an extradition agreement with Canada:

Andorra, Brunei, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Ireland, Liechtenstein, Morocco, Poland, Samoa, Seychelles, Slovakia, Slovenia, Taiwan, United Arab Emirates, Uruguay, Vatican City

Source: You can compare the list of countries with visa-free access to Canada and the lists of countries that 1) has an extradition treaty with Canada or 2) is a "designated extradition partner" of Canada

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  • This looks like a good answer, but, please, add references to the answer itself. A user shouldn't have to google all your claims to verify them.
    – wrod
    Commented Jan 22 at 2:54
  • This is a bit misleading. The first list is describing "The following travellers need an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) to board their flight to Canada. However, these travellers do not need an eTA if entering by land or sea – for instance driving from the U.S. or coming by bus, train, or boat, including cruise ship." So a Bulgarian arriving form Bulgaria to Canada cannot enter without a visa. They can do so only do so if they've already been admitted to the US! So essentially, Canada is accepting visas granted by the US [too], which is somewhat different. Commented Jan 22 at 8:31
  • An yeah, as mentioned in a related Q, Bulgarians need a visa to enter the US: politics.stackexchange.com/questions/84168/… Commented Jan 22 at 8:35
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    An eTA is not a visa. Bulgarians from Bulgaria are officially "visa-exempt", but they still need an eTA. An eTA takes only a few minutes to complete. Commented Jan 23 at 1:31
  • @Fizz many of the other countries listed are US visa waiver program countries, so focusing on Bulgarians' inability to enter the US through the VWP is misleading. But it also underscores Desk Reference's point: if you consider flying to the US under the VWP to be entering without a visa despite the fact that it requires ESTA authorization, then eTA is also not a visa. If you insist on considering ESTA and eTA to be visas then Canada only grants visa free entry to citizens of one country, the US, and the US grants visa free entry to only two, Canada and Bermuda.
    – phoog
    Commented Jan 23 at 2:07
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The German constitution (in Article 16) forbids the extradition of German citizens, except to other EU member states or to international courts, so every non-EU country that allows visa-free travel for German citizens is an example.

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I imagine that lack of extradition treaties is somewhat of a hindrance for establishing visa-free travel between countries, on the argument that if (potential) criminals can enter freely (and then do some crime) one should be at least able to get them extradited thereafter.

The purpose of visas and of visa exemptions has little to do with criminal justice or with the purpose of extradition treaties.

To the extent that a country uses visas to keep undesirable foreigners out, and to the extent that some foreigners are undesirable because they will commit crimes while they're in the country, consider that the existence of an extradition treaty with the foreigner's country of citizenship doesn't make it easier to get the foreigner out of the country after conviction, because that's not extradition; it's deportation. No treaty is needed.

The purpose of an extradition treaty is to get someone who is accused of committing a crime in your country into your country so you can prosecute them. (You can deport them afterward, if they're not a citizen of your country.) The only advantage of an extradition treaty is that you are more likely to be able to bring criminals to justice who have visited your country and committed a crime there and then left the country before they could be arrested.

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