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Armenians Among Those Affected by Invalid US Green Card Lottery Results

Every year the US Department of State draws a Green Card Lottery for people all around the world to win one of 55,000 Green Cards to live and work in the United States of America. According to a Facebook group, entrants this year were able to check their winning status on May 1, 2011, and 22,000 entrants were selected to move forward in the process for applying for the Green Card.

However, earlier this month, the US Department of State announced that the results of the 2012 Diversity Lottery Program are not valid.

“We regret to inform you that, due to a computer programming problem, the results of the 2012 Diversity Lottery that were previously posted on this website have been voided. They were not valid and were posted in error. The results were not valid because they did not represent a fair, random selection of entrants, as required by US law,” reads the announcement on the site, in part.

Organizers of a Facebook page protesting the decision say that the US state department is claiming that “a computer glitch selected 90% of all entrants of the first 2 days of lottery sign up. Those people will now have to hope again to win a second time this year, which will not likely happen for all of them.”

Members of the group titled “US Green Card Lottery DV-2012 — 22,000 winners can’t be ignored” have organized a petition for the 22,000 entrants and supporters who believe that “entrants should be selected for further processing and the new draw entrants should be added to those 22,000 entrants.” The group has even launched its own YouTube channel where those among the 22,000 entrants can upload a video telling their story.

US-based attorney Kenneth White, supporting their cause, has already sent a letter to US Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Visa Services David Donahue and is coordinating relations with media.

Epress.am contacted the US Embassy in Armenia for comments, but was directed to both the US State Department webpage, as well as the embassy’s own 2012 Diversity Visa Program page, both of which say the same thing: due to a computer glitch, the results were not random and are considered invalid.

“A new random selection process will be conducted based on the original entries for the DV-2012 program. If you submitted a qualified entry from Oct. 5, 2010, to Nov. 3, 2010, you do not need to reapply. Your entry will be included in the new random selection. Your confirmation number, which is required to determine the status of your entry, remains the same. We are not accepting new entries for the DV-2012 program.

“We expect the results of the new random selection process to be available by July 15, 2011, via the ESC function on http://dvlottery.state.gov,” reads the notice on the US Embassy in Armenia website.