US Embassy in Manila cancels visa appointment through August 28

Marje Pelayo   •   July 29, 2020   •   1082

MANILA, Philippines – The U.S. Embassy in Manila on Tuesday (July 28) announced that it has canceled all non-immigrant visa interviews scheduled through August 28 in response to the current challenges the COVID-19 pandemic has caused worldwide. 

The visa appointment cancellation does not cover F-1 students.

The Embassy clarified, however, that U.S. embassies and consulates will continue to provide emergency and mission-critical visa services as they are able. 

“As Philippine conditions improve, we will begin providing additional services, culminating eventually in a complete resumption of routine visa operations, the embassy said in its advisory,” the Embassy said.

The Embassy encourages all affected applicants to reschedule their visa interviews through its call center (+6327792-8988 / +6328548-8223) or through the online appointment system (ustraveldocs.com/ph) once vise services resumes.

Change of appointment schedule is free of charge.

Meanwhile, visa application fees are valid for one year in the country where the fee was paid.

Applicants are advised to monitor the latest information on visa operations through the US Embassy official website.

Pemberton flies back to US following BI deportation order

Maris Federez   •   September 13, 2020

US Marine Lance Corporal Joseph Scott Pemberton

MANILA, Philippines — The Bureau of Immigration has announced that US Marine Lance Corporal Joseph Scott Pemberton was successfully deported from the Philippines on Sunday morning, September 13.

Immigration spokesperson Dana Sandoval said in an interview that the military plane that carried Pemberton took off from the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) at exactly 9:14 a.m. He was accompanied by members of the US military and representatives of the US embassy.

The BI official, however, stressed authorities cannot disclose the specific state of Pemberton’s destination for security reasons.

Pemberton was convicted of homicide for killing Filipino transgender Jennifer Laude in 2014.

He was released by virtue of the absolute pardon granted to him by President Rodrigo Duterte after five years into his service of a six-to-10-year prison sentence.

Meanwhile, the US Embassy in the Philippines on Sunday also released an official statement on Pemberton’s release.

“All legal proceedings in the case took place under Philippine jurisdiction and law,” it read.

“Lance Cpl. Pemberton fulfilled his sentence as ordered by Philippine courts and he departed the Philippines on September 13,” it added. — /mbmf

US gov’t issues travel advisory for PH

Marje Pelayo   •   August 10, 2020

MANILA, Philippines — The United States government has advised its citizens to defer any travel to the Philippines due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) situation in the country. 

In a travel advisory, the US Embassy in Manila cited the US Center for Disease Control (CDC) issuance of Level 3 Travel Health Notice due to the high risk of COVID-19 transmission in the country that may affect US nationals. 

The Embassy noted that should any US citizens fall sick in the Philippines, their health might get compromised due to limited resources and medical facilities. 

Apart from the ongoing pandemic, the US government also warned its nationals against the current security concerns in the Philippines.

“Please reconsider traveling to the Philippines due to COVID-19. Additionally, exercise increased caution in the Philippines due to crime, terrorism, civil unrest, a measles outbreak, and kidnapping. Some areas have increased risk,” the Embassy concluded.

US Embassy in Manila cancels visa services through July 3

Robie de Guzman   •   June 11, 2020

MANILA, Philippines – The United States Embassy in the Philippines on Thursday announced it has canceled all immigrant and nonimmigrant visa interviews scheduled through July 3 due to the community quarantine measures being implemented to curb the spread of novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in the country.

“We will resume routine visa services as soon as possible but are unable to provide a specific date at this time. We appreciate your patience and understanding,” the embassy said in a Facebook post.

The embassy said that after the community quarantine is lifted in Metro Manila, all affected applicants should reschedule their visa interviews through the Embassy call center by phone at +63 (2) 7792-8988 or +63 (2) 8548-8223, or through the online appointment system at ustraveldocs.com/ph.

“There is no fee to change an appointment and visa application fees are valid for one year in the country where the fee was paid,” it assured.

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