US Improves Visa Standards for Libyans

US Improves Visa Standards for Libyans
US Improves Visa Standards for Libyans

The United States Embassy in Libya announced that the US Government and Libya’s Government of National Unity (GNU), “continue to work together to facilitate legitimate travel that strengthens ties between the two countries.”

In a statement, the Embassy added: “We are therefore pleased to announce a change in the visa reciprocity standards for certain Libyan and US visas.”

According to the statement, Libyan and US nationals who meet the criteria for regular business or tourist visas will now receive a one-year multiple-entry visa, a significant change from the current visa validity of three months with a single entry.

“As part of this reciprocity update, the visa fees have now been standardized, and reciprocity fees have been completely removed for Libyan citizens,” it noted.

“Students from both countries who qualify for a student visa will now receive multiple entry visas valid for one year whereas previously a single-entry visa was issued. These significant visa changes will help facilitate legitimate travel for diplomatic, educational, cultural, and business purposes and more importantly, deepen people-to-people bonds between our two countries,” it added.

Notably, US President, Joe Biden submitted to Congress 10-Year Plans aimed at implementing US strategies to prevent conflict and promote stability across six nations, including Libya, according to a statement issued by the White House on Friday.

The plan orients US efforts toward the ultimate long-term political goal that Libya is “governed by a democratically elected, unified, representative, and internationally recognized authority that is able to ensure human rights, deliver public services, promote inclusive and sustainable economic growth, secure its borders, and partner with the United States and international community on shared priorities.”

However, the plan acknowledges the need for an “incremental, tailored, and scalable approach, given the current national-level political uncertainties, and practical limitations for US engagement and assistance within Libya.”

In the near term, the plan focuses on a “grass-roots, localized approach to support citizen-responsive democratic local governance, and nascent but promising locally-led reconciliation initiatives.” Southern Libya is the focal point of initial sequenced efforts which incrementally build toward progress in all three major regions of Libya, and ultimately through the critical sub-regions of the Sahel and Coastal West Africa.