Green Card Lottery Winner Sue US State Department over Visas
The adverse effects of the 90 day travel ban instituted by the United States against six countries including Yemen and Iran are being felt by the 2018 DV Lottery winners. The citizens of the country who won the lottery were hopeful of processing their visas and travelling to the United States under the permanent residency program. The winners, however, face an unknown fate due to the ban. Despite being ready to start processing their visas, they have not been able to move a single step because the ban makes them ineligible to travel to the United States.
The travel ban has been received with mixed feelings from different people and even courts in the country. The lower courts were quick to block the ban but this decision was quashed by the Supreme Court, whose decision is binding on the lower courts.
Ninety citizens from Yemen and Iran have moved to the Washington District Court to challenge the refusal of the US State Department to process their visas. Their attempt to get a more detailed response from the Department has been unfruitful, except from a letter stating that “it is plausible that your case will not be issuable”. The ninety are represented by various organizations including the National Immigration Law Center, which holds that it is unfair and unlawful to deny the Green card lottery winners visas on the basis of the ban. The lawsuit asks for, among other remedies, the processing of the visas by the US State Department by the 30th of September, which is the deadline for the visa processing.
Among the concerns of the citizens is the fact that winning the lottery is a rare occurrence. Every year, hundreds of thousands, all around the world play the lottery hoping for a chance to become an American Citizen, only a few of the participants, however, win the lottery. Fewer, still are the number of people who have their visas successfully processed in time to travel to the United States. Winning the lottery, according to the Yemeni and Iranians is a one in a lifetime occurrence hence the importance of the lawsuit to them.
Thousands of other Yemeni and Iranian’s who have not joined in the law suit are curiously waiting for the outcome of the lawsuit which will either make or break their dreams of moving to the United States.