TEL AVIV (Jun. 2)
U.S. Consular officials are giving special scrutiny to the flood of applications from Israelis seeking tourist visas to visit the United States. The reason is that in the past, too many of the “tourists” decided to remain. Immigrants from the Soviet Union who apply for American visas receive the most careful checks as it is suspected by U.S. officials that many of them do not intend to return.
An estimated 40,000 Israelis are expected to visit the U.S. this summer despite serious economic difficulties. The American Consular Offices have been jammed for weeks. Clerks are dealing with as many as 200 applicants a day which is an unusually large number. According to John Peters, First Secretary in charge of Consular operations, only five percent of the applicants are rejected. But most of the others have a long wait because of the work load and tighter checking processes.