Greece-US visa waver agreement expected soon

Greek and U.S. officials say they expect to conclude a visa waiver agreement soon, removing a thorn in bilateral relations. Deputy Secretary of State James Steinberg says a deal on criminal data sharing signed Sunday will pave the way for an agreement by year’s end allowing Greeks to visit the U.S. without visas. Bakoyannis and Steinberg spoke of a “new air” in Greece-US relations after a bilateral meeting during which two accords were signed on the Greek island of Corfu over the weekend.
Greece has long sought to be included in the visa waiver program, but negotiations with the U.S. had failed to make significant progress. Steinberg said the criminal data sharing agreement will respect Greek concerns regarding travelers’ privacy.