Trump’s travel ban partially in effect, approved by US Court

FILE PHOTO: International passengers arrive at Washington Dulles International Airport after the U.S. Supreme Court granted parts of the Trump administration's emergency request to put its travel ban into effect later in the week pending further judicial review, in Dulles, Virginia, U.S., June 26, 2017. REUTERS/James Lawler Duggan/Files

As of Monday, Trump’s travel ban has been in effect partially. The ban was approved by the US Court, banning entry of certain countries. Read ahead to find out.

A U.S. appeals court in California let President Donald Trump’s latest travel ban go partially into effect, ruling the government can bar entry of people from six Muslim-majority countries with no connections to the United States.

Trump’s latest revised travel ban plan was passed on Monday, the 13th of November, but it created an exemption for foreigners with American ties.

The ruling by the Ninth US Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco bars citizens of six Muslim-majority countries who do not have a “bona fide” relationship with a person or entity already in the US.

The action means the ban will apply to people from Iran, Libya, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, and Chad who do not have connections to the United States.

Those connections are defined as family relationships and “formal, documented” relationships with U.S.-based entities such as universities and resettlement agencies. Those with family relationships that would allow entry include grandparents, grandchildren, brothers-in-law, sisters-in-law, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, and cousins of people in the United States.

Sudan was removed, and Chad, North Korea, and Venezuela added, but activists and legal experts say Trump’s intent remains to sharply curb the inflow of Muslim visitors and immigrants.

The state of Hawaii, which sued to block the restrictions, argued that federal immigration law did not give Trump the authority to impose them on six of those countries. U.S. District Judge Derrick Watson in Honolulu ruled last month that Hawaii was likely to succeed with that argument. Hawaii Attorney General Douglas Chin said the court’s decision tracked what the Supreme Court said in June when it partially revived Trump’s second travel ban, which has now expired.

“I’m pleased that family ties to the U.S., including grandparents, will be respected,” Chin added. Trump issued his first travel ban targeting several Muslim-majority countries in January, just a week after he took office, and then issued a revised one after the first was blocked by the courts. The second one expired in September after a long court fight and was replaced with another revised version. Trump has said the travel ban is needed to protect the United States from terrorism by Muslim militants. As a candidate, Trump had promised “a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States.”

Separately on Monday, a group of refugee organizations and individuals filed a lawsuit in Seattle federal court challenging Trump’s decision to suspend the entry of refugees from 11 countries, nine of which are majority Muslim, for at least 90 days.

Critics of the travel ban in its various iterations call it a “Muslim ban” that violates the U.S. Constitution by discriminating on the basis of religion. The 9th Circuit is due to hear oral arguments in the case on December 6. 

In a parallel case from Maryland, a judge also ruled against the Trump administration and partially blocked the ban from going into effect. An appeal in the Maryland case is being heard on December 8 by the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia. The Maryland case was brought by the American Civil Liberties Union, which represents several advocacy groups, including the International Refugee Assistance Project.