US President Barack Obama has announced a new immigration policy that may allow as many as 800,000 illegal immigrants to stay in the country.

It will affect people who arrived in the US before they were 16 years old, but who are not yet 30, and have lived in the country for five years.

The law is not a guarantee for citizenship, but it does allow undocumented immigrants to come out of the shadows for the first time in their lives.

Rights groups have welcomed the move, but critics of the administration say Obama is simply pandering to the Hispanic vote especially in key swing states in an election year.

Al Jazeera's Anand Naidoo reports from Washington DC.

Source: Al Jazeera English