Tuesday, 21 November, 2017

Trump travel ban extended to North Korea

Trump travel ban extended to North Korea Trump travel ban extended to North Korea
Lance Thomas | 26 September, 2017, 00:14

Donald Trump has imposed strict restrictions on travellers from eight countries, three of which were not included in his original travel ban. The proclamation, which Trump administration officials say carries the weight of an executive order, spells out different restrictions for different countries, ranging from total bans for North Korea, Syria, Libya, Yemen, and Chad to just a ban on Venezuelan government officials and their families.

Some federal courts blocked the ban, but the U.S. Supreme Court allowed it to take effect in June with some restrictions.

Trump signed the initial travel ban during his first week in office, but it was met with immediate legal challenges, which have continued to hinder implementation of the full scope of the executive order.

According to Department of Homeland Security, the countries selected for the restrictions were chosen as they failed to share sufficient information with the United States or haven't taken the necessary security precautions.

Citizens of Iran will not be eligible for tourism and business visas, but remain eligible for student and cultural exchange visas if they undergo additional scrutiny.

Tweeting the updated list, Donald Trump wrote: "Making America Safe is my number one priority".

Acting Homeland Security Secretary Elaine Duke "has recommended actions that are tough and that are tailored, including restrictions and enhanced screening for certain countries", Miles Taylor, counselor to Duke, told reporters on a conference call Friday. Unlike the previous orders, Sunday's proclamation is meant to be in place indefinitely. Iraq was also removed from the ban. The original order temporarily banned people from seven majority-Muslim countries - Iraq, Iran, Sudan, Somalia, Libya, Yemen and Syria - and all refugees.

This is the next step in what began as his travel ban from six Muslim nations.

Venezuela and North Korea are the only two non-Muslim majority nations on the list.

Senior administration officials say that the ban is now "condition-based and not time-based", so countries may come off the restricted list at some point.

Critics have accused the president of overstepping his authority and violating the U.S. Constitution's protections against religious bias.

In the case of North Korea, where the suspension was sweeping and applied to both immigrants and non-immigrants, officials said it was hard for the United States to validate the identity of someone coming from North Korea or to find out if that person was a threat.

The Supreme Court will hear arguments on October 10 on whether the current ban discriminates against Muslims in violation of the U.S. Constitution, as lower courts previously ruled.

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