U.S. Calls on Nations to Provide More Traveler Data or Deal With Sanctions
“Extensive data” needed to vet visa applicants to determine if a traveler poses a terrorist threat is going to be required by the U.S. State Department for all nations, or they will face the threat of sanctions.
Based on a report by Reuters sourced from a cable they obtained, countries that do not comply with the new State Department protocols “could face travel sanctions”.
The cable was sent out to every U.S. diplomatic post, Wednesday, and is a full summary of a “worldwide review of vetting procedures” that President Donald Trump’s revised March 6 executive order required to be examined.
Read the cable here.
The memo lays out a series of standards the United States will require of other countries, including that they issue, or have active plans to issue, electronic passports and regularly report lost and stolen passports to INTERPOL.
It also directs nations to provide “any other identity information” requested by Washington for U.S. visa applicants, including biometric or biographic details.
The cable sets out requirements for countries to provide data on individuals it knows or has grounds to believe are terrorists as well as criminal record information.
Further, countries are asked not to block the transfer of information about U.S.-bound travelers to the U.S. government and not to designate people for travel watchlists based solely on their political or religious beliefs.
“This is the first time that the U.S. Government is setting standards for the information that is required from all countries specifically in support of immigration and traveler vetting,” the cable said.