1. On October 9, 2013, the U.S. Department of State ("State Department") sent a cable to U.S. embassies worldwide describing the timeline for deployment and providing guidance to posts on the now mandatory use of the electronic DS-160 for new K visa cases. Posts must require the DS-160 for all K visa applications received more than one week after October 9, 2013.
2. On October 10, 2013, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services ("USCIS") announced that Congress passed a bill extending the Special Immigrant Visa ("SIV") program for Iraqi nationals who worked for or on behalf of the U.S. government, which the President signed into law on October 4, 2013. The extension permits USCIS to approve petitions or applications for visas or adjustment of status to lawful permanent resident in any Iraqi SIV case under section 1244 that were pending with USCIS or with the State Department when the program expired on September 30, 2013. USCIS may also approve an additional 2,000 cases as long as the initial applications to the DOS Chief of Mission in Iraq are made by December 31, 2013.
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