Iranian Students Report US Visas Suddenly Cancelled

  • According to the New York Times on Friday, the visas for three Iranian students seeking to study engineering and computer science in the United States was cancelled.
  • The US Department of State has spoken of no change in student visas.
  • The Trump administration has banned citizens of eight countries from coming to the United States, including Iran.

Visas issued to six Iranian students in the United States were suddenly cancelled, barring them from boarding a flight. The move comes amid a new wave of political tensions between Iran and the US, leaving the educational future of Iranian youth uncertain.

Iran and the United States have had no formal diplomatic relations since 1980. Contacts are carried out through the Iranian Interests Section of the Pakistani Embassy in Washington, DC, and the US Interests Section of the Swiss Embassy in Tehran.

In the latest US move to ban Iranian nationals from traveling to the country, a number of Iranian students who had been issued a study visa and wanted to enroll at the University of California were barred from entering the US territory. According to the New York Times on Friday, the visas for three Iranian students seeking to study engineering and computer science in the United States was abrogated. The students were prevented from flying to the US.

Iranian Students’ Quest for Information

Students whose visas have been revoked amid mounting tensions between Tehran and Washington have been working to gain the support of university officials, lawyers, student unions, and Iranian rights activists in the United States to find out why their visas were canceled. The New York Times quotes these Iranian youths saying that their visas had been revoked abruptly without being informed. Some were banned from boarding in Tehran, and others were not allowed to board a plane while attempting to fly indirectly through the Gulf to the United States.

One of the students wrote in a letter to news media that he had been stopped while flying in Qatar to the United States. The stamp on his US visa was “cancelled,” and he was treated as a “security threat” to the United States. Student sources inside Iran have reported the cancellation of at least four Iranian student visas. One of the students was stopped in Boston and returned to Tehran.

The US Department of State has spoken of no change in student visas, and US education officials have said every fall, with the start of the new semester, they are seeing visa problems for hundreds of thousands of international students who want to go to universities and colleges in America to study.

The “Trump travel ban(s)” (sometimes called the “Trump Muslim ban(s)”) is the colloquial name for executive actions taken by Donald Trump as President of the United States in 2017. The actions include two executive orders for restrictions on citizens of seven (first executive order) or six (second executive order) Muslim-majority countries. A third action, done by a presidential proclamation, restricts entry to the U.S. by citizens of eight countries; six of these countries are predominantly Muslim.

New Restrictions on Travel to America for Citizens of the Eight Countries

The Trump administration has banned citizens of eight countries from coming to the United States— Chad, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Somalia, Syria, Venezuela, and Yemen. However, Iranians who hold a valid student visa or research and cultural exchange visa are exempt from this limitation.

According to a Bloomberg report on June 7, many Iranians have applied for student and research visas. The US media has repeatedly reported the uncertainty of Iranian students admitted to American universities, and wrote that the situation of hundreds of Iranian students who intend to study in the US is inadequate.

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George Mtimba

George clarifies how the news is changing the world, how world news trends affect you. Also, George is a professional journalist, a freelance news reporter and writer who is passionate with current world news.


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