Obama’s Extension of the Iraqi Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) Program

Last week, Congress passed a temporary extension of the Iraqi Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) program, which permits the U.S. government to approve applications for visas or adjustment of status to lawful permanent resident in any Iraqi case that was pending when the program expired on Sept. 30, 2013. Shortly after the extension was cleared by both chambers, President Obama signed the bill into law.

The Iraqi SIV program, which expired on September 30th, was created in 2008 and provides visas for thousands of Iraqis and their families who are endangered as a result of their service to the U.S. Among those affected are Iraqi interpreters, contractors, and others who worked side-by-side with American troops and now wish to seek asylum in the U.S.