Donald Trump
Donald Trump (Courtesy photo)

With the reinstatement of Trump’s travel ban, millions are finding themselves not knowing quite what that means for them and any plans they had of going to the USA, whether for holidays or to live. While it might be wiser by this point to divert your plans to Europe (Just make sure you have an EHIC! You can renew at we’ve decided to look closer into the travel ban, and who is affected by this legislation.

Who can still come in?

Of course, there are exceptions to Trump’s travel ban. If you aren’t a citizen of Libya, Syria, Iran, Sudan, Somalia or Yemen – essentially, every Muslim-majority countries – then you’re probably safe from the travel ban. However, if you are a member of these states or have a relative looking to move to the USA who is, there is still hope. If you are already a legal permanent resident – or ‘green card holder’ – then you’re safe to travel back to the USA as you wish. If you don’t live in the country but have already been approved for a short-term visa, the travel ban also doesn’t affect you. Refugees already admitted into the USA and dual nationals can also enter the country, but residency and visas aren’t the only way to get into the country. If you happen to be a student who has been accepted into a U.S university, or a worker who has already been offered employment.

Who can’t come in?

Unfortunately, if you happen to be a citizen of Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria or Yemen, you’re out of luck. While the list of those who can’t come into the USA might appear shorter overall, the people included in each ‘section’ can be of a greater volume than any permitted. In short, those that aren’t accepted into the USA are anyone not in the ‘accepted’ section who lack a ‘bona fide relationship’ with an American citizen or entity. If you have a school placement or work, these both count as ‘entities’ that you can have a bona fide relationship with, but a hotel reservation, for example, wouldn’t count. Any foreign nationals without a close relation also aren’t accepted. Grandparents, grandchildren, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, cousins, brothers and sisters-in-law or a fiancé do not count as close relations under the travel ban, which has caused outrage amongst those affected and beyond.

How did we get to here?

During the 2016 election, Trump’s campaign promised a ‘total and complete shutdown’ of any Muslims entering the USA “until our country’s representatives can figure out what is going on.” It was an attempt to play on the fears of the country over terrorism and terrorists, and it worked. Trump was voted in as president of the United States of America, but at first it seemed as though he had backed away a little from the idea of a total Muslim ban. What he did try to do, however, was institute an executive order temporarily blocking immigration from a list of mostly Muslim countries – twice.

The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeal, in May, rules that the second order “in context drips with religious intolerance, animus and discrimination” but after the Trump administration brought the issue to Supreme Court, they granted an emergency request from the administration to let the ban go ahead, subject to the “bona fide relationship” restrictions that were enforced on Trump’s legislation.

WI Guest Author

This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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