Donald Trump issues travel restrictions on North Korea, Venezuela in expanded ban

Cheryl Sanders
September 26, 2017

Unlike Trump's first travel ban, which sparked chaos at airports across the country and a flurry of legal challenges, officials said they had been working for months on the new rules, in collaboration with various agencies and in conversation with foreign governments.

Citizens of Iran, Libya, Syria, Somalia and Yemen remain banned from entering the USA under Trump's controversial policy.

Iraq did not meet the standards, according to Trump's order, but the Iraqi government's "close cooperative relationship" with the United States was cited as a reason to not include the country in the travel restriction order. Under the new restrictions, eight nations now have complete or partial blocks on travel to the United States.

One country, Sudan, fell off the travel ban list issued at the beginning of the year. For those visitors affected by the changed restrictions, the new rules will go into effect October 18, according to the proclamation.

ACLU executive director Anthony D Romero said: "Six of President Trump's targeted countries are Muslim".

"The fact that Trump has added North Korea - with few visitors to the United States - and a few government officials from Venezuela doesn't obfuscate the real fact that the administration's order is still a Muslim ban", Anthony Romero, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union, said in a statement.

During the presidential campaign, Trump explicitly called for a ban on Muslims entering the country.

The restrictions are targeted at countries that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) claims fail to share sufficient information with the U.S. or haven't taken necessary security precautions.

The new policy could complicate the Supreme Court's review of the order, which is scheduled for argument next month.

The restrictions on Venezuela target the country's leadership and their family members. The 120-day refugee ban expires on Oct 24. In most instances, travel will be broadly suspended, while in other cases, travelers will have to undergo enhanced screening and vetting requirements.

With the travel restrictions expiring, the court has an easy way out because it could simply say that the case is no longer a live issue and therefore, in legal parlance, moot.

"We managed to get countries who had not previously been sharing things like terrorist information to start doing just that", Miles Taylor, counselor to the homeland security secretary, said in briefing reporters Friday ahead of the decision.

Other reports by iNewsToday