US extends special visa schemes for Afghans

Posted on: 26 Mar 2017  |   Tags: ,

SIV In a fiercely concluded debate in US Congress, it has been decided that the Special Visa schemes for the Afghans will continue. The SIV program stands for a special immigration visa scheme for Afghani people who want to resettle in the USA as they might be harmed or killed by the Taliban terrorists for supporting the USA in the war against them. Most of the Afghans who have applied for SIV supported the US army as firefighters and construction workers. Recently L-1 and HIB visa scheme were compromised due to president Trump’s decision of change in immigration rules. Through E2 and E1 visa scheme was not compromised, but due to the low number of available visa, it is not possible to pass every Afghani applicant for SIV scheme. SIV scheme was first introduced in 2014. In 2016, the previous president, Mr. Obama signed an NDAA act, where it was mentioned that SIV scheme may be extended up to four more years. According to the act, Federal Government has now announced an extension of $446 million to serve the SIV scheme. But many of the senators have extremely opposed this decision as according to them this extension may create a brain drain in Afghanistan. Senator Mr. Shaheen also mentioned that extension of the SIV scheme in this year was tougher than it was in 2016. During the initial stage in 2009, it was decided that the government will be issuing 7500 visas under the SIV scheme in the upcoming 5 years. In 2014 and 2015, the program was extended for additional 12 months, but it failed to meet the actual demand. The USA state department stated that 1632 visas were issued in 2016 where the total number of received applications was 1300. Mr. Shaheen also mentioned that it was a surprise for many senators and at the same time he also praised Mr. John McCain for getting the job done in order to extend the SIV program up to 2020. Betsy Fisher, the police director of IRAP added that in spite of having a large number of receiving applications only 1500 visas can be allowed at this stage. According to IRAP one Afghan has been killed in every 36 hours just because of having a connection with the United States of America. In this matter, Fisher said that it is necessary to allow visa for Afghan people for whom it is very crucial as it will also send a message to the other country that the USA also takes care of the people who help its soldiers. Later Shaheen added that with extension up to 2020, the government will now work on a yearly basis method to issue more SIV visas.

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