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40 new U.S. citizens to be welcomed in Awendaw - Live5News.com | Charleston, SC | News, Weather, Sports

40 new U.S. citizens to be welcomed in Awendaw

Photo Source: AP Photo Source: AP
AWENDAW, SC (WCSC) -

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will host a naturalization ceremony in Awendaw this morning. 

The forty new U.S. citizens come from all walks of life and 21 different countries, a press release says. 

Requirements say candidates must be lawful permanent residents for five years (three years if married to a U.S. citizen).

Another requirement is maintaining a continuous residence and a physical presence during the past five years (three years if married to a U.S. citizen).

These candidates must have a basic knowledge of English, the U.S. government and its history.

According to the Department of Homeland Security the number of people naturalized in South Carolina has increased more than 250 percent since 2003.

In 2014 more than 4,500 new citizens were naturalized in South Carolina.

The ceremony will follow an immigration information session for those seeking citizenship and legal-permanent residency and those seeking to petition benefits for relatives. 

Acting Field Officer Bill Lyttle will administer the Oath of Allegiance at 9:30 a.m.

The ceremony will be held at the Sewee Visitor & Environmental Education Center in Awendaw.

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