Muslim travelers detained at US airports after Trump bans their entry

An Iraqi man stands next to an ad for a 13-day trip to the United States at a travel agency in the capital Baghdad on January 28, 2017, a day after US President Donald Trump signed a new executive order to suspend refugee arrivals and impose tough controls on travelers from seven mainly-Muslim countries, including Iraq. (AFP PHOTO/SABAH ARAR)

An Iraqi man stands next to an ad for a 13-day trip to the United States at a travel agency in the capital Baghdad on January 28, 2017, a day after US President Donald Trump signed a new executive order to suspend refugee arrivals and impose tough controls on travelers from seven mainly-Muslim countries, including Iraq. (AFP PHOTO/SABAH ARAR)

President imposes new controls on arrivals from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen

WASHINGTON — US authorities wasted no time implementing a new order by President Donald Trump halting Muslim arrivals, detaining travelers arriving at American airports within hours of him signing the measures, media reports said Saturday.

The New York Times reported that airport officials as early as Friday night began detaining travelers, some of whom already had been aboard their flights when Trump announced his executive order.

 Travel agents in Tehran said Saturday that foreign airlines were barring Iranians from traveling to the United States following Trump’s temporary order barring visas for seven Muslim countries.

Two Tehran agencies told AFP they had been instructed by Etihad Airways, Emirates and Turkish Airlines not to sell US tickets or allow Iranians holding American visas to board US-bound flights.

Trump imposed tough new controls on travelers from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen.

The new US president signed a sweeping executive order on Friday to suspend refugee arrivals and impose tough controls on travelers from the seven countries.

US President Donald Trump shows his signature on an executive action on rebuilding the military during an event at the Pentagon in Washington, Friday, Jan. 27, 2017. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

US President Donald Trump shows his signature on an executive action on rebuilding the military during an event at the Pentagon in Washington, Friday, Jan. 27, 2017. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

Trump was speaking by phone Saturday with various world leaders, amid growing international alarm and a legal challenge over his moves to drastically limit Muslim immigration and entrance.

In a flurry of telephone calls that started early in the morning and was to last throughout the day, Trump was to speak from the White House with five foreign leaders: Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel, Russia’s President Vladimir Putin, France’s President Francois Hollande and Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull.

The conversations give the US president an early opportunity to explain new policies that have baffled and unnerved much of the rest of the world — particularly his order to temporarily halt all refugee arrivals and impose tough controls on travelers from seven Muslim countries including war-wracked Syria.

It also allows him to begin to develop ties with countries that have been close allies with the US in recent history, as well as Russia — a perennial foe, but a country with which Trump has said he is keen to improve relations.

‘Extreme vetting’

Trump’s pronouncement on Muslim immigration to the US makes good on one of his most controversial campaign promises to subject travelers from Islamic countries to “extreme vetting,” which he declared would make America safe from “radical Islamic terrorists.”

“This is big stuff,” the new US president declared at the Pentagon on Friday, after signing an executive order entitled “Protection of the nation from foreign terrorist entry into the United States.”

The decree suspends the entire US refugee resettlement program for at least 120 days while tough vetting rules are established.

The new protocols “ensure that those approved for refugee admission do not pose a threat to the security and welfare of the United States.”

In addition, they specifically bar Syrian refugees from the United States indefinitely, or until the president himself decides that they no longer pose a threat.

Meanwhile, no visas will be issued for 90 days to migrants or visitors from seven mainly-Muslim countries: Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen.

The executive order also laid the groundwork for what Trump has pledged will be the “extreme vetting” of visa applicants’ backgrounds — with some exceptions made for members of “religious minorities,” a caveat many see as a way to apply favorable treatment to Christians from majority-Muslim states.

US rights group sue

US rights groups filed a legal challenge Saturday to Trump’s order. The suit was filed by the American Civil Liberties Union and other advocacy groups after two Iraqi men were detained Friday night at John F. Kennedy Airport in New York. It seeks their release on grounds they are being held unlawfully.

International groups and civil liberties organizations roundly condemned the measures.

“‘Extreme vetting’ is just a euphemism for discriminating against Muslims,” said Anthony Romero, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union.

Romero said Trump’s order breached the US constitution’s ban on religious discrimination by choosing countries with Muslim majorities for tougher treatment.

 

Ahmed Rehab, director of the Chicago chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, told AFP his group would mount legal challenges to fight the order “tooth and nail.”

“It is targeting people based on their faith and national origin, and not on their character or their criminality,” he told AFP.

Many foreign leaders, meanwhile, were aghast over the new US policy.

Speaking in Tehran Saturday, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani did not comment directly on the visa ban but said Iran had “opened its doors” to foreign tourists since the signing of a nuclear agreement with world powers in 2015.

Now is “not the time to build walls between nations,” he said, in a reference to Trump’s plans to build a wall along the US-Mexico border.

But the US leader did get backing from Czech President Milos Zeman, who praised him for being “concerned with the safety of his citizens.”

Advertisements

5 comments

  1. Cliff

    Here we are yet again witnessing PRESIDENT TRUMP making good on ANOTHER “campaign promise”. It is refreshing to say the least to see a person in power making good on the words from the “trail”. The “groups” can “sue” all they want the LAW is the LAW. Follow it, or pack your bags and leave the U.S. We don’t want you here to make trouble anyhow. MAGA!

    • Gordon King

      Thanks for your comment Cliff!

      You said it brother! President Trump has made good on more promises than any other President that I can think of in recent history! And it’s only been one week! The opposition is in fear because President Trump has so far been a man of his word.

      God bless!

  2. Pingback: Reflecting on “peace” – Decoding-Bible-Prophecy. wordpress.com
    • Cliff

      We can certainly HOPE. I am VERY concerned with the word coming out that SOROS and his “companies” AGAIN have been inciting and FINANCING these “professional Protestors” to the cause the riots and “protests” we are witnessing on the news. This Man and all those associated with him that STILL are causing the unrest, should be ARRESTED and PROSECUTED to the fullest extent of the law. Furthermore, his accounts and assets need to be frozen so there will be no more “pay” for these so-called “professional protestors” If the pay dries up, maybe the rabble rousers will go home. God Bless and GOD BLESS AMERICA.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s