American Center Hanoi closes amid US gov't shutdown

By Staff Reporters   January 21, 2018 | 10:35 pm PT
American Center Hanoi closes amid US gov't shutdown
The American Center in Hanoi. Photo via the U.S. Embassy's facebook page.
Passport and visa services will continue as 'the situation permits', but all other activities will be put on hold.

The U.S. Embassy in Hanoi announced today on its Facebook page the closure of the American Center Hanoi following the U.S. government's shutdown last Friday.

Passport and visa services will continue "as the situation permits", but the Facebook feed will not be updated until full operations resume. 

The American Center Hanoi, located at 170 Ngoc Khanh Street, is part of the Public Affairs Section under the U.S. Embassy. It is open to the general public and provides information about the U.S. through its multimedia archives. 

In the past it has hosted guest speakers, training courses, debates and exhibitions free of charge. 

This is the second time the U.S. gov't has gone into shutdown in five yeas. It was previously crippled in 2013 during President Barack Obama's tenure due to lack of funds. 

Past shutdowns did not have a huge impact on the U.S. economy in general, but did rattle financial markets. 

The dramatic decision came last week after Congress failed to pass new appropriations as Democrats and Republicans disputed immigration and border security measures, according to Reuters.

U.S. senators blocked the bill to extend gov't funding through February 16, which needed 60 votes out of 100, but fell short at 50. 

The official shutdown became effective on Saturday, the first anniversary of President Donald Trump's inauguration. 

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