3/17/17 - Increased Screening of Visa Applicants

March 17, 2017

The U.S. Department of State recently issued cables to all diplomatic and consular posts providing instructions for increased scrutiny for visa applicants. 

Included in this population are individuals who may have been present in an ISIS controlled territory including Iraq.  Individuals may face additional questions, and social media review. Individuals subject to these security clearances can expect extremely long visa processing times ranging from 2-6 months or more. 

Additionally, the cables instructs all consular posts to limit the number of visa interviews per day to 120, which is expected to create backlogs for all applicants.

See the March 17 DOS cable 25814 for more details. This cable supersedes Cable 24324, which contains provisions regarding applicants from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria and Yemen.