Trump’s Immigration Order Doesn’t Affect Citizenship Applications

 Beryl A. Howell, chief judge for United States District Court for the District of Columbia, swore in several dozen new U.S. citizens from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial on Sept. 16, 2016. Beryl A. Howell, chief judge for United States District Court for the District of Columbia, swore in several dozen new U.S. citizens from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial on Sept. 16, 2016. Shane T. McCoy / U.S. Marshals

Citizenship and Immigration Services has confirmed to Quartz that president Donald Trump’s 90-day suspension on providing “immigration benefits” to nationals of Iran, Iraq, Sudan, Syria, Libya, Somalia, and Yemen as part of his executive order on immigration does not preclude those nationals from gaining citizenship through naturalization.

“USCIS will continue to adjudicate N-400 applications for naturalization and administer the oath of citizenship consistent with prior practices,” a spokesman for the agency wrote in an email to Quartz referencing the form used to apply for U.S. citizenship.

The order, which also prevents nationals of those countries from entering the U.S., puts no restrictions on travel by U.S. citizens irrespective of an additional citizenship. Thus gaining U.S. citizenship would be a way to avoid these new impediments to travel, while also gaining complete protection against deportation.

An initial interpretation of the order barred green-card holders—U.S. non-citizen long-term permanent residents—of those countries from entering the US as well, but was later changed to remove that restriction. Typically U.S. residents must be green-card holders to become citizens.

While there could always be future changes in law or policy that affect the ability of green-card holders to become citizens, the present order is not one of them.

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