The Trump Administration may impose visa restrictions on government officials and their families who come from four Asian and African nations that won’t repatriate immigrants who have violated section 243(d) of the Immigration and Nationality Act.
A State Department official told Voice of America, “We follow a standard process to implement a visa suspension as expeditiously as possible in the manner the secretary determines most appropriate under the circumstances to achieve the desired goal. That process includes internal discussions with, and official notification to, affected countries.”
Cambodia, Eritrea, Guinea and Sierra Leone were identified as being stubborn about taking the deportees back. They would join China, Cuba, Vietnam, Laos, Iran, Guinea, Cambodia, Eritrea, Burma, Morocco, Hong Kong and South Sudan as nations listed by the Department of Homeland Security as recalcitrant.
Mamady Condé, Guinea’s ambassador to the United States, admitted that roughly 2,000 Guineans live in the United States illegally. Bockarie Kortu Stevens, Sierra Leone’s ambassador to the U.S., denied the idea that many or most Sierra Leoneans are in the United States illegally. Census data claims roughly 49,000 Sierra Leoneans live in the United States.
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has the capacity to stop all or specific types of visas from being issued to a nation considered unwilling to repatriate deportees.
According to AP, the Department of Homeland Security urged the State Department to take action against four nations out of the dozen recalcitrant countries. When asked for comment, the State Department stated it would only make public the exact penalties for the nations after those nations were informed.
The only two countries previously targeted by the State Department have been Guyana and Gambia. Visa sanctions are rarely imposed on foreign countries because of fear of reciprocity from the targeted nations.