Federal judge blocks Trump's most recent travel ban

Chad, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Syria, Venezuela and Yemen were listed in the order issued on September 24.

U.S. District Judge Theodore Chuang issued a partial injunction on the ban Tuesday evening in a case brought by the International Refugee Assistance Project, which sued the Department of Justice (DOJ) for seeking travel restrictions on citizens of eight countries.

The revised restrictions made some bans indefinite, and made exceptions for certain countries, but included restrictions for travelers from eight countries: Iran, Yemen, Syria, Libya, North Korea, Chad, Venezuela, and Somalia.

"It lacks sufficient findings that the entry of more than 150 million nationals from six specified countries would be 'detrimental to the interests of the United States, '" and it "plainly discriminates based on nationality".

"These restrictions are vital to ensuring that foreign nations comply with the minimum security standards required for the integrity of our immigration system and the security of our Nation", the White House statement said. Trump's third attempt to implement the travel ban has, for now, met the same fate as the previous two - blocked by litigation in the federal courts.

But Chuang said he could not determine, as Watson did, that Trump had violated a different part of federal immigration law requiring him to find entry of certain non-immigrant travelers would be "detrimental" to USA interests before blocking them.

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In September, as authorities worked on a new directive, Trump wrote on Twitter "the travel ban into the United States should be far larger, tougher and more specific-but stupidly, that would not be politically correct!"

Doug Chin, the attorney general of Hawaii, which challenged the ban, issued a statement saying, "This is the third time Hawaii has gone to court to stop President Trump from issuing a travel ban that discriminates against people based on their nation of origin or religion". Mooppan declined to discuss details of the classified report, and said the government does not have to explain whether Trump's advisers disagreed about the ban.

Mooppan argued that because the new version of the ban went in place after a thorough review, it does not constitute a "Muslim ban".

Chuang wrote that the president's public statements "not only fail to advance, but instead undermine, the position that the primary objective of the travel ban now derives from the need to address information sharing deficiencies".

  • Rogelio Becker