Trump issues new travel ban, lightens up on more controversial restrictions

Trump issues new travel ban, lightens up on more controversial restrictions

On Monday President Donald Trump signed a new executive order ban­ning migrants from six predominately Muslim nations. The order is a re-tun­ing of last month’s executive order, popularly viewed as a “Muslim ban”, and will come into effect on March 16.

The new order drops Iraq from the initial list of seven countries, and gets rid of an exception for migrants that belong to religious minorities. The indefinite ban on refugees from Syria has also been brought down to a 120 day ban. Experts believe the changes were made to help the order pass legal challenges, since Trump’s previous at­tempt was halted by U.S. courts.

The order also differs in that it al­lows permanent residents and those who have already received refugee status to enter the U.S.

“The Unites States has the world’s most generous immigration system, yet it has been repeatedly exploited by terrorists and other malicious ac­tors who seek to do us harm,” reads the fact sheet submitted by the White House along with the order.

Those seeking visas from Iran, Lib­ya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen will have their application process sus­pended for 90 days, while the admin­istration reviews its vetting processes with the goal of identifying terrorists.

“We don’t want them here,” said president Trump of terrorists during the signing of the previous bill. “We want to ensure that we are not admit­ting into our country the very threats our soldiers are fighting overseas. We only want to admit those into our country who will support our country, and love deeply our people.”

In trying to justify itself, the order points out that 300 people admitted to the U.S. as refugees were investigated for counter terrorism purposes. How­ever, the order failed to note whether or not these people were from any of the countries banned.

Critics have called the order un­necessary, arguing that it exists sole­ly for Trump to pander to his right wing base.

A recently leaked report from the U.S. Department of Homeland Securi­ty brought severe doubt to the Trump administration’s claim that the travel ban’s is an effective and necessary counter-terrorism tool.

The report found that most terror­ists are home-grown — they only rad­icalize after living in the United States for some time.

“We assess that most foreign-born, U.S. based violent extremists likely radicalized several years after their entry to the United States, limiting the ability of screening and vetting officials to prevent their entry be­cause of national security concerns,” reads the report.

An earlier version of the report reads that “foreign-born, U.S.-based individuals who were inspired by a foreign terrorist organization to par­ticipate in terrorism-related activity were citizens of 26 different coun­tries, with no one country represent­ing more than 13.5 per cent of the foreign-born total.” It also concluded that “country of citizenship is unlikely to be a reliable indicator of potential terrorist activity.”

Trump’s new executive order, like its previous iteration, has some surprising exclusions. Saudi Arabia, the country from which most of the 9/11 hijackers were citizens of, is not listed as one of the banned countries.

It remains to be seen whether or not the changes made will allow this iteration of the order to survive le­gal scrutiny.

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