US embassy cable - 02AMMAN4968

SURVEY OF NON-IMMIGRANT VISA ISSUANCE POLICIES

Identifier: 02AMMAN4968
Wikileaks: View 02AMMAN4968 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: Embassy Amman
Created: 2002-09-03 12:52:00
Classification: SECRET//NOFORN
Tags: ASIG AMGT CVIS JO
Redacted: This cable was not redacted by Wikileaks.
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

S E C R E T SECTION 01 OF 02 AMMAN 004968 
 
SIPDIS 
 
OIG 
NOFORN 
 
STATE FOR ISP TEAM SEVEN 
DAMASCUS PASS TO DOUGLAS ELLICE 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 08/28/2012 
TAGS: ASIG, AMGT, CVIS, JO 
SUBJECT: SURVEY OF NON-IMMIGRANT VISA ISSUANCE POLICIES 
 
REF: STATE 154899 
 
Classified By: CONSUL LES HICKMAN, REASON 1.5 (B) AND (D) 
 
1.  (U) The following is in response to reftel questions. 
 
A) (S/NF)  Law Enforcement and Intelligence Agencies 
Represented at Post: ORCA, LEGATT, DIA, (STATE) DS 
 
B) (S/NF) Visas Viper Information Input Process:  Potential 
submissions are sent to the Visas Viper Coordinator (VVC) who 
in turn consults with the Consul.  Then the submission is 
sent to the DCM in a draft Visas Viper cable for approval. 
The DCM either approves the submission or requests more 
information to ensure the case meets the guidelines for 
submission. 
 
C)  (S/NF) Frequency of Meetings:  Visas Viper meetings are 
held monthly in accordance with State 140282. 
 
D)  (S/NF)  Visas Viper meetings are chaired by the DCM. 
 
E)  (S/NF)  Members Are: DCM, VVC, Consular Chief, A/RSO, and 
representatives from ORCA, DAO, LEGATT, POL, ECON and FBIS 
 
F)  (S/NF)  Number of Names Submitted by Agency:  In the last 
12 months the VVC sent four cables to the Department from 
State representatives.  ORCA, LEGATT and DAO submit names 
through their agencies and slug submissions for INR TIPOFF. 
 
G)  (S/NF)  Quality/Effectiveness of Washington Visas Viper 
Support/Guidance:  Post is satisfied with Washington's 
guidance and support for our contributions to the program. On 
more than one occasion the Department has sent kudos cables 
on our submissions. We also believe that timeliness of 
responses to Security Advisory Opinions and 00 hits could be 
improved. 
 
2.  (S/NF)  Chief of Mission Oversight of the Process:  The 
Chief of Mission has designated the DCM to oversee the Visas 
Viper activities.  The DCM reports to the Chief of Mission 
all significant developments concerning the program. The 
Front Office has a close and continuing association with the 
members of the Visas Viper Committee, through Country Team 
meetings and other meetings outside of the Visas Viper 
process. 
 
3.  (S/NF)  The Coordination Process at the Mission Section 
Level:  Visas Viper representatives routinely consult with 
the VVC and Consular Chief concerning all operational issues 
of the program. The coordination effectiveness is excellent. 
 
4.  (S/NF)  Post Officers from other than 
Consular/Intelligence/Law Enforcement Involved in the Visas 
Viper Program:  Post Officers from POL, ECON, DAO and FBIS 
participate.  POL and ECON track potential terrorist and 
terrorist financing issues respectively.  DAO has sources of 
information appropriate for submission.  FBIS and its 
monitoring of various information sources is also a good 
reference for submissions. 
 
5.  (S/NF)  Occasions for Intelligence and Law Enforcement 
Agencies to Meet with Consular Staff Outside of the Visas 
Viper Meetings to Discuss Terrorist Threat Information: 
During Country Team and Emergency Action Committee meetings 
terrorist threat information is evaluated and reported as 
part of our review of the general security environment for 
the safety of Mission staff and the American community.  Also 
ORCA consults with Consular staff directly concerning NIV 
applicants (Iraqis in particular) who may have intelligence 
value. 
 
6.  (S/NF)  ORCA Officers in the Consular Section:  Not 
applicable. 
 
7.  (S/NF)  Frequency of Hits in CLASS Determined to be 
Terrorist Related:  Within the last year there were no hits 
in CLASS that were terrorist related.  It is Post policy for 
two Consular Officer to review a potential 00 hit to 
determine if it merits a Security Advisory Opinion (SAO).  If 
two officer agree, then an SAO is sent. In case there is 
difficulty with a consensus, the case is brought to the 
Consular Chief for a decision prior to sending an SAO. 
 
8.  (S/NF)  Requests from Mission Officer/Offices to Issue 
Visas in Cases Involving Terrorist CLASS Hits: Post did not 
have any occasion (within the past two years of Consular 
Chief's tenure) when an office, officer, or other 
section/agency requested visa issuance for a terrorist CLASS 
hit.  We are not aware of any terrorist related visa requests 
by Mission offices for applicants not found in CLASS. 
 
9.  (S/NF)  Decision on the Disposition of These Requests and 
Review of the Decisions: In the event such a request is made, 
the requesting Agency/Section must consult with the Consular 
Chief and DCM.  If a decision is made to support the visa 
issuance, Post would submit an SAO with a recommendation for 
issuance under national security or other appropriate 
justification. 
 
10.  (S/NF)  Were Visas Issued to Applicants with Possibly 
Disqualifying Information Linking them to Terrorism?  All 
issued visas cases cleared the CLASS namecheck system in 
compliance with Visa Lookout Accountability guidelines.  Last 
year Post issued a potential CLASS hit. The Consular officer 
made a determination that the potential hit was not valid 
because the applicant was a female and the CLASS entry was a 
male.  Subsequent review of the case revealed that the 
applicant was an immediate relative of the CLASS entry with 
potential terrorist ties.  The applicant's visa was revoked 
but she attempted to enter the U.S. and INS denied her entry. 
 In cases where subsequent information is available that 
leads to visa ineligibility, Post initiates the revocation of 
the visa and makes every attempt to physically cancel the 
visa. 
 
11.  (S/NF)  Does the Consular Section Maintain a Special 
Lookout File?  All information located in the Consular 
Section must be unclassified.  There is an A-Z file with Post 
information; however, since the files are unclassified this 
information would not be terrorist related. 
 
12.  (S/NF)   Please Provide Additional Comments on How to 
Improve the Visas Viper Process:  Post agrees that an 
effective Visas Viper program is essential.  We periodically 
bring the program to the attention of the Country Team as a 
reminder of the Mission's responsibilities under the program. 
 
BERRY 
 
 
 
BERRY 

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