New York: US First Lady Melania Trump’s parents became American citizens in a naturalization ceremony here, completing a year-long immigration process even as President Donald Trump called for new laws to bar Americans from sponsoring parents and other relatives. Michael Wildes, an attorney for Viktor and Amalija Knavs, who had been living in the country as legal permanent residents after leaving their native Slovenia, confirmed that his clients took the oath of citizenship at the ceremony on Thursday, reports The Washington Post. “Citizenship was just awarded,” Wildes said. “They have prevailed in a wonderful journey, as millions have.”
Wildes said the Knaves satisfied the requirement that permanent residents hold their green cards for five years before they can apply for US citizenship. However, it remains unclear when the Knaves first moved to the US, but by late 2007, Viktor Knavs was listed in public records as residing at Mar-a-Lago, the President’s private club in Palm Beach, Fla. The Knaves received no special treatment because of their relationship with the first family, Wildes told reporters in New York.
Questions about the couple’s immigration status intensified last year as the President mounted a push to reduce legal immigration, including provisions to constrict the ability of US citizens to sponsor their parents, adult children and siblings for green cards, The Washington Post reported. (IANS)