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Trump Issues Country-Specific Travel Ban

President Donald Trump has issued a proclamation that imposes new travel restrictions on eight countries, “Enhancing Vetting Capabilities and Processes for Detecting Attempted Entry in to the United States by Terrorist or Other Public-Safety Threats.” Five of the eight countries were included in the previous travel ban.

The new restrictions were issued on September 24, 2017, just as the old 90-day travel ban expired, and will go into effect on October 18. Until then, by virtue of the proclamation, the “old” travel ban will continue for those countries still on the list who do not have a bona fide relationship with a U.S. person or entity.

The new restrictions will not be applied to:

  • Current lawful permanent residents

  • Current visa holders

  • Dual nationals travelling on a passport from an unaffected country

  • Asylees

  • Refugees already admitted to the U.S.

  • Individuals granted protection under the Convention Against Torture

The restrictions are based on a review of the identity management practices and information sharing on national security and public threats practices of countries worldwide and tailored to match them.

  • Chad, Libya, and Yemen

    • Entry as immigrants and nonimmigrants in business and tourist status is suspended

  • Iran

    • Entry as immigrants and nonimmigrants is suspended, except for those in valid student (F and M) or exchange visitor (J) status

  • Syria and North Korea

    • Entry as immigrants or nonimmigrants is suspended

  • Venezuela

    • Entry in tourist or business visitor status is suspended for officials of certain government agencies involved in screening and vetting practices and their immediate family members

  • Somalia

    • Entry as immigrants is suspended and decisions regarding entry as nonimmigrants will be subject to additional scrutiny

Although Iraq is not technically covered by the new restrictions, the proclamation notes that Iraqi nationals will be subject to additional scrutiny.

How long these restrictions will last is uncertain. Countries may be removed or added to the list depending upon further review of the effectiveness of their security practices. Waivers will be available on “undue hardship” grounds if a Consulate determines the entry would not pose a threat to national security and the admission would be in the national interest. This could include individuals who have already been admitted to the U.S. for extended periods of time.

The Supreme Court was set to hear the travel ban case on October 10. The Justices have cancelled that hearing and asked the parties to submit new briefs by October 5 on the effect of the new proclamation on the old travel ban.

Jackson Lewis P.C. © 2019

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About this Author

Michael H. Neifach, Jackson Lewis, Employment visa Lawyer, border security matters attorney
Principal

Michael Neifach is a Principal in the Washington, D.C. Region office of Jackson Lewis P.C. He is a recognized leader on immigration, visa and border security matters, and he is Co-Leader of the firm's Immigration practice group.

Mr. Neifach has held senior positions at the White House Homeland Security Council, U.S. Department of Homeland Security, and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). He served as General Counsel at ICE from July 2007 through January 2009. Following his government service, Mr. Neifach oversaw...

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