Melania Trump's parents get U.S. citizenship

Melania Trump's parents get U.S. citizenship

First lady Melania Trump's parents were sworn in as USA citizens in New York City on Thursday.

Michael Wildes, the attorney for the first lady's parents Viktor and Amalija Knavs, told The New York Times on Thursday that their daughter had sponsored them for a green card, and that they applied for citizenship once they were eligible.

Wildes confirmed that the Knavs had used what Trump has denounced as "chain migration", which allows adult American citizens to obtain residency for their relatives by sponsoring them.

Melania Trump's parents were sworn in as USA citizens on Thursday, completing a legal path to citizenship that their son-in-law has suggested eliminating. Now that the couple are USA citizens, it's important to note the president's hypocrisy when it comes to immigration policies.

The first lady's office declined to comment.

Viktor, 74, is two years older than President Trump.

In addition, Trump is also readying a proposal that would make it hard for legal immigrants to obtain citizenship.

The Knavses' lawyer said they had "travailed a wonderful journey".

Russia names Steven Seagal humanitarian envoy with US
The foreign ministry said the unpaid role will be similar to the United Nations' goodwill ambassador positions. Seagal, who became a Russian citizen in 2016, is a close friend of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The Knavses frequently travel with the Trumps and split their time between New York, Palm Beach and Washington, where they stay in the White House, the NYT report added.

Under US law they must have been permanent residents for five years before applying to become citizens, and the time to process an application can take several months thereafter. That preferential program, popularly known as the "Einstein visa", is intended for immigrants with "extraordinary ability, [who] are an outstanding professor or researcher, or are a multinational executive or manager", according to the U.S. Customs and Immigration Services.

They came and went from the ceremony at a Manhattan federal building flanked by Homeland Security police.

New citizens are normally minted on Fridays, they said, and often the ceremonies are held at the federal courthouse across the street.

The Knavses' citizenship ceremony was kept hush-hush at the Jacob K. Javits Federal Building.

Melania grew up in a two bedroom apartment in Sevnica, a small city formerly under communist control.

She settled in NY in 1996 and met Trump two years later.

Viktor and Amalija Knavs listen as their attorney makes a statement in New York, Thursday, Aug. 9, 2018.

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