U.S. embassies ordered to identify population groups for extensive visa screening
According to a Reuters exclusive, U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has directed U.S. diplomatic missions to identify “populations warranting increased scrutiny” as well as toughen screening for visa applicants in those groups.
Secretary Tillerson has also ordered a “mandatory social media check” for all visa applicants who have ever visited territory controlled by the Islamic State. According to Reuters, two former U.S. officials have said this would be a broad, labor-intensive expansion of such screening.
Former State Department officials have cautioned that in-depth social media investigating could significantly increase processing times for applicants. Both Republicans and Democrats have previously called for wider social media screenings from refugees and other applicants seeking to enter the United States, mostly citing that such investigation could help stop future terrorist activity.
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