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H.R. 1263 (115th): Protecting Allies from Visa Exclusion (PAVE) Act

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The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress, and was published on Feb 28, 2017.

Protecting Allies from Visa Exclusion (PAVE) Act

This bill makes any executive order precluding issuance of visas to, revoking visas issued to, or precluding entry or admission of, a class or classes of aliens inapplicable to an alien who is a national of Iraq or Afghanistan and has been granted special immigrant status pursuant to: (1) the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2008, (2) the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2006, or (3) the Afghan Allies Protection Act of 2009.

Any such executive order shall not apply to an alien who has been granted refugee status, has been approved for refugee admission, or is a refugee applicant in the United States Refugee Admissions Program under a priority 2 designation pursuant to this bill or the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2008. Priority 2 is for groups of special humanitarian concern identified by the U.S. refugee program.

The bill provides priority 2 designation for:

Afghanis who were or are employed by the U.S. government in Afghanistan, Afghanis who are or were employed in Afghanistan by a U.S.-headquartered media or nongovernmental organization or an organization closely associated with the U.S. mission in Afghanistan that has received U.S. government funding, family members of such aliens or of Afghanis granted special immigrant status based on valuable U.S. service, and Afghanis who are members of a persecuted religious or minority community and who have close family members in the United States. The Department of State may identify other priority 2 groups of Afghanis, including vulnerable populations.