Melania's parents become U.S citizens through 'chain migration' programme

U.S First Lady Melania Trump's Slovenian parents have become American citizens after taking the citizenship oath during a ceremony in New York using a programme her husband Donald Trump has repeatedly denounced and termed as "chain migration".

Melania's parents, Viktor and Amalija Knavs, were sworn in as U.S citizens at a federal immigration court in New York City.

The pair had been living in the U.S on green cards sponsored by their daughter Melania.

"Once they had the green card, they then applied for citizenship when they were eligible," the couple's lawyer Michael Wildes was quoted as saying by 'The New York Times'

Asked if the Knavses had obtained citizenship through "chain migration", Wildes, said, "I suppose".

"It's a dirty a dirtier word," he said, adding that "it stands for a bedrock of our immigration process when it comes to family reunification."

Trump has vehemently opposed the family-based or what he called "chain immigration" in the past.

The programme allows adult American citizens obtain citizenship for their relatives.

"Chain migration must end now! Some people come in, and they bring their whole family with them, who can be truly evil. Not Acceptable!" Trump said in a tweet in November.

(Agencies)