Trump Announces New Travel Restrictions On 8 Countries

President Donald Trump gives the commencement address for the Class of 2017 at Liberty University in Lynchburg, Va., Saturday, May 13, 2017. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

The Hill
Sept 25, 2017

President Trump is replacing his controversial travel ban with a targeted list of restrictions that will enhance vetting for nationals from eight countries, senior administration officials announced Sunday.

The eight countries on the modified list of countries are Chad, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Somalia, Syria, Venezuela and Yemen.

The officials say these states failed to comply with the U.S. information-sharing requirements that aim to make vetting processes stronger.

Iran, Libya, Syria, Yemen and Somalia are part of the president’s initial travel ban, and it has removed its restrictions on Sudan. 

Four additional countries have been added to the list of states that do not meet the new American vetting requirements: Iraq, North Korea, Chad and Venezuela.

The officials maintained that the restrictions are based on an objective worldwide review, not based on origin or religion.

The proclamation comes the same day that Trump’s 90-day ban on visitors from six Muslim-majority nations is set to expire.

The order will go into effect on Oct. 18. The lifted restrictions on Sudan went into effect with the completion of the president’s signature on the directive. 

“As president, I must act to protect the security and interests of the United States and its people,” Trump said in the proclamation.
The president also took to Twitter around the time the announcement was made. “We will not admit those into our country we cannot safely vet,” Trump tweeted.
Individuals who fall under the Supreme Court’s “bona fide” exception can still apply for visas until Oct. 18. This would allow a foreign grandparent of a U.S. citizen to be granted the benefit of travel until this date.
Though Iraq is not part of the list of targeted nations, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) said that Iraqi nationals should “be subject to additional scrutiny to determine if they pose risks to the national security or public safety of the United States.”

The White House consulted with officials from DHS, the State Department, the Department of Justice and other government agencies to enact the new security measures.

Some states were denied because of their identity management and information sharing deficiencies, some have substantial terrorist organizations in their region that add to the threat level of admitting their citizens into the U.S., and others have failed to comply whatsoever with the information agreements.

The restrictions are “necessary” and conditions-based with the aim of protecting Americans by having stronger vetting standards, one senior official said.

Changes to the list can be made on a rolling basis with updates every 100 days. The changes can go both ways: countries can be taken off the list, but they can also be put on the list if they are not seen as complying with the standard

The officials said an announcement will be coming in next six days to inform members of Congress about any changes or modifications to the refugee cap. 

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