A new Trump immigration order has removed Iraq from the list of Muslim countries whose citizens are temporary banned from traveling to the US. According to the Associated press, this revelation was made by four undisclosed US officials on Tuesday.
According to the Associated press, this revelation was made by four US officials who pleaded anonymity on Tuesday.
The four officials told the Associated Press that the decision followed pressure from the Pentagon and State Department, which had urged the White House to reconsider Iraq’s inclusion given its key role in fighting the Islamic State group.
President Trump is expected to sign the new executive order in the coming days.
The remaining citizens of the six other predominantly Muslim countries – Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen – will remain on the travel ban list, said the officials.
Other changes on the new Trump immigration order includes the singling out of Syrian refugees for an indefinite ban. The officials said the 12-page document will now include the Syrian refugees as part of a general, 120-day suspension of new refugee admissions.
Trump signed his original executive order in late January sparking immediate confusion, panic and outrage as some travelers were detained in U.S. airports before being sent back overseas while others were barred from boarding flights at foreign airports.
President Trump, in his speech before the Congress, said a broad immigration reform plan was possible if both Republicans and Democrats in Congress were willing to compromise. He said US immigration should be based on a merit-based system, rather than relying on lower-skilled immigrants.
Comprehensive immigration reform eluded his two predecessors because of deep divisions within Congress and among Americans over the issue. President Trump said reform would raise wages and help struggling families enter the middle class.
While pushing for tougher law enforcement, Trump also said an Australian-style immigration system would “save countless dollars, raise workers’ wages, and help struggling families – including immigrant families – enter the middle class.”
The U.S. government initially blocked U.S. green card holders before offering those legal residents special permission to come into the country. It finally decided the order didn’t apply to them.
The State Department provisionally revoked roughly 60,000 valid visas in all, before a federal judge in Washington state blocked the government from carrying out the ban. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld that decision.
After Trump signed the original order, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi refuted the ban and said he would consider reciprocal measures. Many Iraqi lawmakers urged the government to ban Americans from Iraq in response, despite the potential effects that might have on the anti-IS fight.
The New Trump Immigration order emerged following a report by intelligence analysts at the Homeland Security Department, which found insufficient evidence that citizens of the seven Muslim-majority countries posed a terror threat to the United States.