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Trump’s overturned ‘Muslim ban’ means Iranian woman is finally granted visa to stay in US with her husband


A woman’s three year wait for a visa so she can live with her American husband has finally come to an end, after President Joe Biden reversed his predecessor’s so-called “Muslim ban”.

Mona Smith, an Iranian woman studying for a PhD in Canada married husband Ricky, from the US, in 2017, with dreams of moving to America so they could start their family and buy a home.

However, when Ms Smith applied for a Green Card visa in 2018, they received no reply, meaning they were living in constant uncertainty, with her husband spending his time in Milwaukee while she stayed in Canada.

Mona and Ricky Smith
Image:
The pair married in Canada in 2017. Pic: Ricky Smith

All that has now changed, after she was awarded a visa to stay in the US by the embassy in Montreal, with officials saying it is thanks to Joe Biden overturning the ban on people entering from certain Muslim countries, of which Iran was one.

Reversing the controversial policy from the Trump Administration was one of the first things Joe Biden did when he entered office last month.

“Finally, finally Mona has a US visa – she’s coming to the US,” Mr Smith says in an emotional video clip after the embassy meeting.

“We can live together, we can have a family together, we can buy a house. This is amazing.”

A tearful Ms Smith added: “In my head I was waiting for [the embassy] to tell me that, because I’m from Iran, she may not issue my visa, but it was, yeah… I just felt like tears were running down my face.”

Speaking to Sky News, Mr Smith said the travel ban “destroyed” their lives.

“I remember seeing the headline on my iPhone that Trump was going to ban travellers from certain Muslim countries from entering the United States.

Ricky Smith
Image:
Ricky met Mona while he was in Iran on his 30th birthday. Pic: Ricky Smith

“I just remember sitting there and I turned white and my hands got all sweaty.”

“Our lives were destroyed. I mean, it sort of ruined our lives for the last four years both psychologically and practically.”

He added that they did not want to let the “xenophobic” policies of the government at the time dictate their lives, so decided to marry in Canada.

“I spent four days with my wife and in Canada and I flew back to Milwaukee, and I remember I mean, it was just surreal. I’m sitting there on a plane back to back to Milwaukee, and I’m just thinking to myself, my God, I just got married and I’m leaving my wife in Toronto and I’m going back to the States.

“And she’s not welcome there because of where she was born. And it’s upsetting. It’s troubling. It makes you angry, but at the same time, it makes you nervous for the for the future and of you.”

Mrs Smith is set to get her visa within the next two to three weeks, at which point she will be legally able to live and work in the US.



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