BoJo’s girlfriend Carrie Symonds BARRED from US – report
Carrie Symonds, the partner of UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson, has reportedly been denied a visa to visit the US due to a five-day trip to Somaliland in East Africa last year, a region with severe political unrest.
Symonds, who moved into 10 Downing Street when Johnson became prime minister in July, was hoping to visit the US in the next few days as part of her adviser role for Oceana, a US-based environmental non-profit organization.
However, US authorities have blocked her entry, according to the Daily Mail.The paper reports that during her 2018 trip to Somaliland, a country that does not have diplomatic relations with the US, Symonds met with Muse Bihi Abdi, the nation’s self-declared president, to discuss sea pollution and female genital mutilation.
The 31-year-old would have had to declare such a visit while applying for her Electronic System for Travel Authorisation (Esta) to gain entry to the US. The screening process allows visitors to travel to the US for up to 90 days without the need for a formal visa, as long as they don’t pose a security risk.
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Declaring such a trip may have led to Symond’s visa-waiver application being declined because of Somaliland’s political instability. Somaliland broke away from Somalia in the aftermath of a civil war, declaring itself to be an independent state in 1991.
What makes the issue more complicated for Symonds to resolve is that she cannot officially ask Downing Street to intervene on her behalf. Officials at No 10 stated that her new role, alongside Johnson in Downing Street, would come at “no additional cost to the taxpayer.”
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