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Iranians cannot be denied asylum simply because they are Iranian

Sometimes events happen the home country of a foreign national so much that it no longer is safe for the foreign national to return to their home country.  When this happens, the United States offers Asylum to foreign nationals who have a genuine fear for his or her safety if he or she were to return home. For Iranian nationals living in the United States, there has been a lot of rumors and false information that has been spread stating that the United States is no longer offers asylum to Iranian nationals. This information is false.

First and foremost, the United States cannot issue a blanket denial to all Iranians seeking Asylum. That would be unconstitutional. The United States cannot discriminate based on sex, national origin, race, religion, and so on. Therefore, for the United States to single out Iranians seeking Asylum solely because the applicant is Iranian would be unconstitutional.

This does not mean that if an Iranian national applies for asylum that his or her application will automatically be approved. The applicant still has to prove that he or she “suffered persecution or fear that they will be persecuted”.  The U.S. government lists specific categories that the applicant has had to have faced persecution, or fears persecution in those areas if the applicant returns to his or her home country.

In short, Iranian's applying for asylum will have his or her case heard and not automatically denied. The immigration officer will determine if the applicant qualifies for asylum based on the case. This is why it is important for Iranian's applying for asylum to present a strong case showing how he or she has been persecuted or the fear of being persecuted if he or she were to return to Iran.

If an Iranian seeking asylum has his or her application denied, the government is supposed to give a reason for the denial. Again, the denial cannot be solely based on the national origin, sex, etc. The applicant also has the option to appeal the denial, which would open his or her case. There is a time limit that the applicant has to file the appeal. This is where having an experienced immigration attorney, if the applicant already doesn't have one, is crucial.

Since his administration began, President Trump has made many efforts to pass travel bans which would keep certain foreign nationals from being allowed entry into the United States. Most of his travel bans have been struck down by the courts, however the latest one was upheld. This however, has little affect on Iranian's seeking Asylum in the United States since they are already in the country.

This is an immigration legal blog. It is not intended to be used as legal advice. For further information please contact the law offices of attorney Ramona Kennedy.

Ramona Kennedy (Attorney) received her Jurisprudence Doctorate in America and is a licensed attorney in California (USA). Ramona Kennedy is a member of American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA). Ramona Kennedy is fluent in English and Farsi (reading & writing) & speaks Azeri Turkish.

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