US restricts visas to unmarried gay diplomats

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The Trump administration will no longer permit unmarried, same-sex partners of United Nations staffers and diplomats to enter the country with their partners.

They noted one particular exception to the new policy: The administration is prepared to work with diplomats from countries where same-sex marriage is illegal, provided the country offers equivalent protections to LGBTQ diplomats from the U.S. Otherwise, they'll be forced to leave the USA come 2019.

"Same-sex spouses of USA diplomats now enjoy the same rights and benefits as opposite-sex spouses", read the announcement obtained by Foreign Policy.

At least 10 current United Nations employees will have to marry by the end of this year for their partners' visas to remain valid under the new rules, according to Foreign Policy.

"State Dept. will no longer let same-sex domestic partners of United Nations employees get visas unless they are married", she tweeted, noting that "only 12% of United Nations member states allow same-sex marriage".

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The new policy reverses a 2009 procedure put in place by then-Secretary of Sate Hillary Clinton that allowed same-sex partners to obtain a G-4 or spousal visa.

'Only 12% of United Nations member states allow same-sex marriage, ' she wrote on Twitter. And unmarried partners who aren't yet in the United States will not be eligible for visas to move there.

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Nam, during a telephone interview with Fox News, said the new rule puts people slated to start assignments in NY at a greater risk in their home countries.

But a State Department spokesperson explained that the policy shift is designed "to help ensure and promote equal treatment", NBC News reports.

Former US ambassador to the UN Samantha Power blasted the move as "needlessly cruel and bigoted".

Most diplomats affected come from countries where same-sex marriage is legal, another official said, without providing numbers. If they don't, their spouse will be expected to leave the country in 30 days.

'Requiring a marriage as proof of bona fide partnership is a bad and cruel policy, one that replicates the awful discrimination many LGBT people face in their own countries, ' she wrote in a statement.

Individuals will be eligible for "limited exceptions" if they can prove they are from countries that outlaw same-sex partners, said Stephen Schlesinger, a fellow at the Century Foundation, a think tank.

But this line ignores the reality in most countries, where gay marriage is not legal.

Now, diplomats and officials at these organizations who are in same-sex relationships will face the choice between getting married and separating.

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