15 Sep 2011

US Senate calls for visa curbs to stop Micronesian migrants

7:28 am on 15 September 2011

The United States Senate is calling on the Obama Administration to begin restricting the visa-free access to the US accorded to citizens of three freely associated states in the north Pacific.

The US Senate Appropriations Committee is directing the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to establish a plan to begin denying entry of people from the Federated States of Micronesia, the Marshall Islands and Palau.

The directive is contained in the committee's fiscal year 2012 budget for the Department of Homeland Security passed last week.

It still must be adopted by the House of Representatives.

In Guam, legislators have discussed deportation options for criminals from the three countries following the stabbing murders of three men on the island last Sunday that involved islanders from Chuuk in the FSM.

Marshall Islands leaders have expressed concern at the US Senate efforts to change immigration provisions of the Compact of Free Association.