Hattiesburg holds ceremony for new citizens of the United States - WDAM-TV 7-News, Weather, Sports-Hattiesburg, MS

Hattiesburg holds ceremony for new citizens of the United States

HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) -

It was definitely a memorable day for 24 immigrants as they became United States citizens on Friday during a Naturalization Ceremony held at the Colmer Federal Building in Downtown Hattiesburg.

Congressman Steven Palazzo says this is the right path into this country.

"I'm so proud that they did it the legal way, they did it the right way, they honored the laws of our country," said Palazzo. "I think they are going to be good citizens because they're not taking shortcuts, they're not cheating."

For some, after years of being in this country, their hard work paid off.

"I have been here about sixteen years, I never thought I would be here this long," said new citizen, Mohammed Jalaluddin.

"Having this privilege to be a U.S. citizen it's an unbelievable feeling," said new citizen, Ali Efe Adali.

U.S. District Judge Keith Starrett along with Judge Michael Parker administered the oath of allegiance and say it's days like these that make their job worth-while.

"It's easily the most exciting thing that we do as judges," said Judge Parker. "You have people that not only want to be citizens, but are willing to work for it and it's gratifying to watch that happen."

"It's a great occasion for the people who were sworn in, for their families, and for our country," said Judge Starrett. "It reaffirms that we are a nation of immigrants."

Copyright 2013 WDAM. All rights reserved.

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