Melania Trump’s parents sworn in as U.S. citizens

Amalija and Viktor Knavs parents of First Lady Melania Trump arrive with their lawyer Michael Wildes at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services at the Jacob K. Javits Federal Building

Melania Trump's parents get US citizenship

First lady Melania Trump's parents are finally United States citizens after years of living under communist rule in Slovenia.

Viktor Knavs, 73, and his wife Amalija, 71, took the citizenship oath in a private ceremony in Manhattan, the New York Daily News reports.

"CHAIN MIGRATION must end now!" he tweeted.

Pressed on the fact that the President has harshly criticized family-based migration and regularly refers to it as "chain migration", Wildes responded: "I can't comment on the President's politics when it comes to my clients but I have stood up against the President's immigration policies personally".

"He said, 'Hey look, there's people, nice people, they're relaxing, some are jogging, '" Donald Trump said during a rally last week in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, lamenting the lives lost and injured.

Viktor Knavs is 74, two years older than his son-in-law.

Viktor and Amalija Knavs, who are from Slovenia, had previously been living in the legal permanent residents with green cards.

The first lady's office declined to comment.

The first lady was not present for the ceremony, and her parents told their lawyer she was in Bedminster, New Jersey, where the president spends time in the summer at Trump National Golf Club.

The president in January proposed ending most family-based immigration and replacing it with a skills-based system.

In family-based immigration, adult American citizens can petition for residency for their parents, adult married children and siblings. He also called for eliminating a visa lottery program for people from countries underrepresented in the US.

Experts estimate those measures would cut legal immigration into the USA almost in half.

The Knavses' citizenship ceremony was kept hush-hush around the Jacob K Javits Federal Building. Thomas Cioppa, New York district director of the US Citizenship and Immigration Services, presided over the 20-minute ceremony, Mr Wildes said.

Melania grew up in a two bedroom apartment in Sevnica, a small city formerly under communist control.

Melania Trump's parents have been sworn in as USA citizens.

Although Melania started from humble roots, she launched a successful modeling career prior to her marriage to the president.

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