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English
By
Mosiqi Acharya

26 Jan 2017 - 3:27 PM  UPDATED 8 Mar 2017 - 11:10 AM

UPDATE - 

US President Donald Trump has signed a controversial executive order tightening America's borders, but Australian tourists travelling to the US will largely not be impacted.

Australians, New Zealanders and citizens of 35 other countries allied with the US will still have the simple option of going online and applying for entry to the US if their travel is for business or pleasure and less than 90 days.

There were fears the order Mr Trump signed on Friday, titled The Protection of the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry Into the United States, could scrap the visa waiver program and force Australians to sit for interviews at US consulates before departing, but that was not the case.

The draft states to immediately suspend the Visa Interview Waiver Program which allowed travellers to renew travel authorizations without an in-person interview.

"The Secretary of State shall immediately suspend the Visa Interview Waiver Program and ensure compliance with section 222 of the INA (Immigration and Nationality Act), which requires that all individuals seeking a nonimmigrant visa, undergo an in-person interview, subject to specific statutory exceptions," the draft executive order states.

READ THE DRAFT HERE: 

Draft Executive Order To Limit Entry of Muslim Refugees and Immigrants by Jessica Schulberg on Scribd

Earlier:

A proposed draft by the Trump administration states that US is planning to change visa process for countries who have enjoyed visa interview waiver program till now.

The Huffington Post is reporting that a draft copy of an executive order on immigration and refugees which is likely to be signed this week states Australians planning on visiting the US could be forced to undertake an in-person interview with American officials under strict new border rules.

The draft states - Suspend the visa interview waiver program indefinitely and review whether existing reciprocity agreements are reciprocal in practice.

The visa interview waiver program that allows Australians and citizens from 37 other countries a 90-day tourist visa to easily enter the US by simply submitting biographical information online, could be suspended.

Visitors, instead, would have to sit for an in-person interview before entering the US. 

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