A group of 16 US senators from the Democratic Party are urging the Biden administration to ensure that equal treatment of all US citizens – regardless of ethnicity, national origin and religion – is upheld within the Visa Waiver Program, as it considers Israel’s candidacy to join the coveted program.
The letter, sent on Wednesday and quoted by Haaretz, is the most significant Congressional missive to date expressing skepticism that Israel is currently eligible to enter the program. Acceptance of Israel into it would spare its citizens the time-consuming and expensive process of obtaining visas for US visits, allow for 90-day visits for tourism or business and catalyze economic cooperation.
The Biden administration, with outgoing US Ambassador to Israel Thomas Nides helming the matter, and successive Israeli coalitions have prioritized Israel’s entry to the program.
Under Nides’ stewardship, Israel reached several significant milestones in the process, including helping the refusal rate for tourist visa applications to fall to below the three percent benchmark set by the US State Department, while the Knesset finalized legislation allowing Israel to share biometric data with the US.... Read More: Arutz-7