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Foreign scientists coming to the United States are suffering long delays due to visa restrictions, a new report has confirmed.

The report, which was commissioned by the US House Committee on Science, gives weight to anecdotal evidence that foreign scientists are experiencing increasing difficulties when trying to enter the country. It found that scientists wait an average of 67 days for their visas – well above the state department's 30-day target.

The delays are particularly bad for scientists from countries such as India, China and Russia, who must undergo frequent interagency security checks involving the FBI, the CIA and the Department of Homeland Security.

Link to full news story in Nature

Reference: Nature 427, 766 (2004)