The number of vias issued to Saudis has reportedly doubled. From the Jerusalem Post:
For the first time since the September 11 terrorist attacks in New York and Washington, the US State Department has begun to sharply increase the number of entry visas granted to Saudi Arabian nationals seeking to visit the United States, The Jerusalem Post has learned.
Figures obtained by the Post reveal that after three years of steady decline, 2005 saw the number of US visas issued to Saudis remain relatively stable, while this year the number has more than doubled.
In an e-mail to the Post, Amanda D. Rogers-Harper, a spokeswoman for the US State Department, confirmed that as of June 10, a total of 18,683 non-immigrant US visas had been issued to Saudi citizens since the start of the current fiscal year.
“This,” she noted, “is twice as many as the 9,338 issuances to Saudis” in the corresponding period last year, marking an increase of over 100 percent in just the past 12 months.