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Embassy Attorney Policy

The government’s policy barring attorneys from attending passport and Consular Reports of Birth Abroad interviews at the U.S. Embassy in Djibouti was a violation of due process, a federal court in New York ruled. Plaintiffs testified that embassy employees routinely confiscated their passports and other documents and would be “detained for hours without food, water, or their required medication.”

BROOKLYN, N.Y. – The government’s policy barring attorneys from attending passport and Consular Reports of Birth Abroad interviews at the U.S. Embassy in Djibouti was a violation of due process, a federal court in New York ruled. Plaintiffs testified that embassy employees routinely confiscated their passports and other documents and would be “detained for hours without food, water, or their required medication.”

Shortly after the 31 plaintiffs filed suit, the government changed its policy to allow attorneys to be present but “severely circumscribing their roles.” 

The court ruled that some of the plaintiffs’ claims may continue but denied their motion for a preliminary injunction because they have all received their documents.  

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