By Sebastian Modak. Photos: Getty.
On Monday morning President Donald Trump signed a new executive order temporarily banning entry into the United States for citizens of six predominantly Muslim countries. The move comes a little over a month after a federal appeals court blocked an earlier version of the order, citing a lack of evidence that anyone from the targeted countries had committed acts of terrorism on U.S. soil. The revised version includes the same 90-day ban on entry to citizens of Syria, Iran, Yemen, Libya, Somalia, and Sudan and a 120-day suspension of refugees of all nationalities. Iraq, however, which had been subject to the original ban, has been removed. In marked contrast to January's order, this one was signed out of sight of cameras, according to the New York Times. It includes a clause that revokes the previous one and replaces it with this update.
One country is off the list: The decision to remove Iraq from the list of countries included in the travel ban came after negotiations between the Iraqi government and the U.S. Department of State. According to a fact-sheet that was shared with reporters ahead of the complete executive order text, as a condition to the omission, "Iraq will increase cooperation with the U.S. Government on the vetting of its citizens applying for a visa to travel to the United States." One of the most publicized cases of someone being denied entry into the U.S. following the original executive order (and the one that launched a series of court cases starting with a federal court in Brooklyn) involved an Iraqi citizen who had worked with U.S. forces as an interpreter being detained for almost 19 hours at JFK.
Some of the especially controversial edicts have been scrapped: Among the components missing from this second version is a clause that gave priority to refugees who belonged to a religious minority, given that minority was not Muslim—language which critics said gave a preference to Christians. An indefinite ban on Syrian refugees has also been removed. They will now fall under the universal 120-day suspension, which is subject to review and renewal.
Other language has been clarified: In the scramble that ensued in the days following the original order, there were reports of legal permanent residents, or green card holders, being denied entry at airports across the country, based on their nationality. The administration followed up days later to clarify that the order did not affect permanent residents. This time it's written into the executive order, and also includes temporary visa holders who may be abroad when the order takes effect.
The order won't be rolled out overnight: Protests at airports around the country, visa holders deported or detained, confusion as airlines struggled to make sense of what the order meant for their passengers and crews. The chaos that broke out in the days following the original executive order was largely due to a lack of coordination between government agencies. This time, in an apparent effort to be better prepared, the order has a ten day lead-in. It goes into effect at 12:01 a.m. Eastern on March 16.
This story originally appeared on Conde Nast Traveler.
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