By: KDKA-TV News Staff

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – There are now officially more than a dozen new U.S. citizens in our area.

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Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto oversaw the naturalization ceremony at the City County Building Thursday morning.

U.S. Customs and Immigration Service says the ceremony is part of the Welcome to Pittsburgh initiative which has seen naturalization ceremonies in the City County building since 2015, but this was the first ceremony since the pandemic started.

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(Photo: KDKA Photojournalist Scott Danka)

One of the new citizens said he’d been dreaming of this day.

“In this moment of happiness, I want to share that this is the moment I’ve dreamed of since I laid my feet in this beautiful soil. I’ll keep on working hard, following my dreams and loving this beautiful country of ours,” he said.

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The new citizens got a packet of info including the words to the Star-Spangled Banner.