FM: Iran will no longer issue visas to Americans - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

FM: Iran will no longer issue visas to Americans

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CAIRO (AP) -- Iran's foreign minister has reiterated that Iran will no longer issue visas for Americans, describing the decision as a "counter-action" to Trump's executive order banning nationals from seven Muslim-majority countries, including Iran, from entering the United States.

Mohammad Javad  Zarif added that "if there is an exception, it will be reviewed through the mechanism which has been created in the Foreign Ministry."

Zarif spoke to the "Khorasan daily" on Tuesday on the sidelines of a joint press conference with his visiting French counterpart, Jean-Marc Ayrault.

About 5 million tourists visit Iran each year, most of them coming from Iraq and other neighboring countries. Europeans have also been coming to Iran, but Americans represent far less than 1 percent of the total -- or about 50,000 -- and are subjected to rigorous background checks.

Zarif first announced the reciprocal move by Tehran on Saturday, when Trump's visa restrictions took effect. At the time, he said Iran's ban will not be retroactive and that all Americans with already valid Iranian visas "will be gladly welcomed."

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