ALBANY, N.Y. -- Ten people took the oath of allegiance Thursday at the Empire State Plaza to become America's newest citizens.
Abdullah Sahil was one of the people who took the oath.
"I am very happy," he said. "It's the Fourth of July, and I'll never forget this."
People from Sudan, Bulgaria and Afghanistan took part in the ceremony. Afghanistan is where Sahil began his journey to become a U.S. citizen.
"I was working back home as an interpreter for the U.S. Army for almost 6 years," he explained.
He came to America in 2008 to start a new life with his family and to escape the war torn region.
"That's a war zone," Sahil said. "It's bad. I don't want to go back to those stories because it makes me emotional."
Reciting the pledge of allegiance as an American is a moment Sahil said was five years in the making.
"That was one of my wishes to become part of this nation," he said.
Also in the group was Nayna Rane.
"This is awesome. I am very very very happy," she said.
In order to celebrate in style, she made sure she showed off her pride in America by wearing her favorite patriotic top.
"Every Fourth of July I wear this shirt," she said. "I'm proud of America."
For this group, the naturalization ceremony was about gaining new freedoms and new opportunities they didn't have in their previous countries.