September 13, 2017
PRESS RELEASE: U.S. Embassy Asmara Suspends Visa Issuance to Eritreans Nationals and Residents
As of September 13, 2017, the United States Embassy in Asmara, Eritrea, under instructions from the Secretary of State, has discontinued the issuance of non immigrant visas for business or pleasure (B1/B2) to Eritrean citizens, subjects, nationals, and residents. The Department of State may make exceptions for travel that is in the U.S. national interest, for emergency or humanitarian travel, and other limited exceptions. This action was taken pursuant to Section 243(d) of the United States Immigration and Naturalization Act.
According to that section of the law, when a country denies or unreasonably delays accepting one of its nationals, the Secretary of Homeland Security may notify the Secretary of State. The Secretary must then order consular officers in that country to discontinue issuance of any or all visas.
Consular operations at the U.S. Embassy in Asmara remain open, and we will not cancel any appointments. These visa restrictions do not affect other consular services provided, including adjudication of applications from individuals not covered by the suspension. Visas that have not expired will continue to be valid. Section 243(d) is a discontinuation of issuance; currently valid visas will not be revoked based on Section 243(d) alone.
Visa applicants subject to the order who have already scheduled a visa interview may choose to cancel their appointment. Any fees associated with the application cannot be refunded if the visa is not issued. Visa fees already paid may be used for a visa application for one year from the date of payment.