Who is affected by the ban?
All travellers who have nationality of Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen are not permitted to enter the US for 90 days, or be issued an immigrant or non-immigrant visa.
People who have dual nationality with a non-restricted country are not affected, so long as they travel on the passport from the other country.
Summary of the Order:
1) It brings in a suspension of the US Refugee Admissions Programme for 120 days
2) There is also an indefinite ban on Syrian refugees
3) And anyone arriving from seven Muslim-majority countries – Iraq, Syria, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, and Yemen – faces a 90-day visa suspension. Some visa categories, such as diplomats and the UN, are not included in the suspension
What about people with Green Cards?
Under the executive order, permanent legal US residents ( Green card holders) – from the seven countries were initially subject to the same restrictions, causing widespread concern and confusion.
Two days after it was signed, the department for homeland security issued a statement saying that permanent legal residents would be determined on a case-by-case basis. But, it said, in the absence of significant information that they posed a threat, their permanent legal status would gain them entry to the US.
However, on 1 February, Donald McGahn, the legal counsel to the president, then issued a memo saying the travel ban did not apply to lawful permanent residents of the United States.
Syrians applying for resettlement in the US were already subject to a complex process of background investigation and security screenings, in a process that could take between 18 to 24 months.
What are the legal arguments?
In the past, the US used to ban entrants from specific countries and entire regions., but in 1965, the US Congress passed the Immigration and Nationality Act which said that no person could be “discriminated against in the issuance of an immigrant visa because of the person’s race, sex, nationality, place of birth or place of residence”.
So, the exclusion of all Syrians would be enough to challenge Mr Trump in court. The fact that they are all Muslim countries lends weight to the critics’s argument that the order is “anti-Muslim”.