Trump Reinstates Controversial US Travel Ban

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Written By Mahmoud Sarvari

President Donald Trump is showing that he is determined to push forward his travel ban by signing a new executive order.

The original order was blocked by federal judges.

The replacement drops Iraq from the list of blacklisted countries but continues to stop anyone entering the US who has connections with Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Iran, Libya and Yemen.

A criticism levelled against Trump is that these are states where most the population are Muslim.

Iraq is missing from the second list after Trump was criticised for barring thousands of translators risked their lives working alongside US forces following the fall of dictator Saddam Hussein.

Reworked ban on six countries

The White House says the new order will block entrance into the USA for 90 days while the government considers further travel restrictions to enhance border security.

Trump has also exempted thousands of green card holders from the six countries who are already in the US from any action under the order.

The first travel ban, signed just a few weeks ago, triggered huge demonstrations across the US and in countries around the world.

Although the travel ban is reworked for the second order, much of the contentious content remains.

One of the issues with the first order was Trump stopped travel between the Muslim countries and the US for 90 days and barred refugees for 120 days, while those from Syria faced an indefinite ban.

Protests and legal challenges

“This executive order has scrapped that division and the indefinite suspension, and has collapsed them into a single category of a 120-day suspension,” said the White House.

“The new order will keep terrorists out while we review arrangements for vetting refugees and visa applicants from certain countries.”

Lawyers argue that the order discriminates against Muslims and point out that none of the terrorists involved in 9/11 or other US terror incidents are connected with any of the six countries listed.

The new order is expected to herald a new wave of protests and legal challenges.

The Iraqi foreign ministry said: “The decision is an important step in the right direction, it consolidates the strategic alliance between Baghdad and Washington in many fields, and at their forefront war on terrorism.”