- The Washington Times - Monday, April 22, 2019

President Trump took action Monday to crack down on the number of foreign visitors to the U.S. who overstay their business or tourist visas past their authorized time.

Mr. Trump signed a memorandum directing Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and the Homeland Security Department to find effective ways within 120 days “to combat the rampant number of overstays,” the White House said.

One action being considered would suspend or limit entry of people from certain countries with high rates of overstays. The administration also is developing a plan to require “admission bonds” as a potential way to improve compliance with visas, the White House said.

As of March, there were more than 415,000 people in the U.S. suspected to be overstaying their nonimmigrant visas from fiscal year 2018. The White House said 20 countries have overstay rates of more than 10% — some as high as 40%.

Mr. Trump said in his directive that nonimmigrant visa overstay rates “are unacceptably high for nationals of certain countries.”

He said the problem places “significant strain on Department of Justice and Department of Homeland Security resources, which are currently needed to address the national emergency on our southern border.”

His memo directs the secretary of state to work with governments of countries with a total overstay rate greater than 10% for combined B-1 (business) and B-2 (tourism) nonimmigrant visas, based on data from fiscal 2018.

Countries with high rates of visa overstays include: Angola, Chad, Syria and Yemen.

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