The United States will immediately begin
considering visa applications of gay and
lesbian spouses in the same manner as
heterosexual couples, U.S. Secretary of State
John Kerry said on Friday.
Kerry made the announcement at the U.S.
Embassy in London.
"When same-sex couples apply for a visa, the
Department of State will consider that
application in the same manner that it
considers the application of opposite sex
spouses," Kerry said shortly after his arrival
"If you are the spouse of a U.S. citizen, your
visa application will be treated equally. If you
are the spouse of a non-citizen, your visa
application will be treated equally. If you are
in a country that doesn't recognize your
same-sex marriage, then your visa
application will still be treated equally at
every single one of our 222 visa processing
centers around the world," he added.
The move comes after the Obama
administration urged all U.S. agencies to
review their polices after the U.S. Supreme
Court in June struck down a key part of the
federal law that defined marriage as between
a man and a woman.
Last month, the Department of Homeland
Security said its U.S. Citizenship and
Immigration Services would begin reviewing
peitions filed on behalf of same-sex spouses
the same way as those for spouses in