The State Department confirmed last week that it can revoke the visas of foreigners who have expressed backing the terrorist group Hamas.
The department claimed it has “broad authority under the INA (Immigration and Nationality Act) to revoke visas.”
“We exercise the authority when there is information or evidence indicating a visa holder may be ineligible for a U.S. visa,” it said.
Under the INA, those who have engaged in terrorist activity and those who have “persuaded others to endorse or support” a terrorist group are banned from entering the country.
“Even after issuance of a visa, the Department of State works closely with the Department of Homeland Security and other partner agencies to ensure every visa applicant is continuously screened to ensure they remain eligible for travel to the United States,” the department continued.
Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) sent a letter to Secretary of State Antony Blinken last month, calling on the agency to revoke the visas of those who participate in pro-Hamas demonstrations.
“I urge you to immediately use existing law to eradicate this hate from our country,” Rubio wrote. “In addition, I will be introducing legislation to provide further tools to ensure supporters of Hamas, and other FTOs [foreign terrorist organization], do not benefit from our country’s generosity.”
College campuses have experienced a wave of antisemitic incidents and protests in recent weeks after the Oct. 7 Hamas terror attack on Israel. Demonstrators have called for a cease-fire in the Israel-Hamas war and have demanded that the U.S. end aid for Israel.