H. R. 4681
To provide for the adjustment of status of certain Syrian nationals.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,
SECTION 1. FINDINGS.
The Congress finds as follows:
(1) President Bush and President Clinton successively conducted successful negotiations with the Government of Syria to bring about the release of members of the Syrian Jewish population and their immigration to the United States.
(2) In order to accommodate the Syrian Government, the United States was required to admit these aliens by first granting them temporary nonimmigrant visas and subsequently granting them asylum, rather than admitting them as refugees (as is ordinarily done when the United States grants refuge to members of a persecuted alien minority group).
(3) The asylee status of these aliens has resulted in a long and unnecessary delay in their adjustment to lawful permanent resident status that would not have been encountered had they been admitted as refugees.
(4) This delay has impaired these aliens' ability to work in their chosen professions, travel freely, and apply for naturalization.
(5) The Attorney General should act without further delay to grant lawful permanent resident status to these aliens in accordance with section 2.
SEC. 2. ADJUSTMENT OF STATUS OF CERTAIN SYRIAN NATIONALS.
(a) ADJUSTMENT OF STATUS- Subject to subsection (c), the Attorney General shall adjust the status of an alien described in subsection (b) to that of an alien lawfully admitted for permanent residence, if the alien--
(1) applies for adjustment of status under this section not later than 1 year after the date of the enactment of this Act or applied for adjustment of status under the Immigration and Nationality Act before the date of the enactment of this Act;
(2) has been physically present in the United States for at least 1 year after being granted asylum;
(3) is not firmly resettled in any foreign country; and
(4) is admissible as an immigrant under the Immigration and Nationality Act at the time of examination for adjustment of such alien.
(b) ALIENS ELIGIBLE FOR ADJUSTMENT OF STATUS- The benefits provided by subsection (a) shall apply to any alien--
(A) is a Jewish national of Syria;
(B) arrived in the United States after December 31, 1991, after being permitted by the Syrian Government to depart from Syria; and
(C) is physically present in the United States at the time of filing the application described in subsection (a)(1); or
(2) who is the spouse, child, or unmarried son or daughter of an alien described in paragraph (1).
(c) NUMERICAL LIMITATION- The total number of aliens whose status may be adjusted under this section may not exceed 2,000.
(d) RECORD OF PERMANENT RESIDENCE- Upon approval of an application for adjustment of status under this section, the Attorney General shall establish a record of the alien's admission for lawful permanent residence as of the date 1 year before the date of the approval of the application.
(e) AVAILABILITY OF ADMINISTRATIVE REVIEW- The Attorney General shall provide to applicants for adjustment of status under subsection (a) the same right to, and procedures for, administrative review as are provided to applicants for adjustment of status under section 209(b) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1159(b)).
(f) NO OFFSET IN NUMBER OF VISAS AVAILABLE- Whenever an alien is granted the status of having been lawfully admitted for permanent residence pursuant to this section, the Secretary of State shall not be required to reduce the number of immigrant visas authorized to be issued under any provision of the Immigration and Nationality Act.
(g) APPLICATION OF IMMIGRATION AND NATIONALITY ACT PROVISIONS- The definitions contained in the Immigration and Nationality Act shall apply in the administration of this section. The fact that an alien may be eligible to be granted the status of having been lawfully admitted for permanent residence under this section shall not preclude the alien from seeking such status under any other provision of law for which the alien may be eligible.
Passed the House of Representatives July 11, 2000.