Trump slaps travel restrictions on N.Korea, Venezuela in sweeping new ban

Sudan was dropped from Trump's original travel bans, the latter of which expired Sunday, while Chad, North Korea, and Venezuela were added.

The U.S. president issued his first travel ban order one week after taking office on January 20, barring U.S. entry to citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries including Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen with immediate effect. A few federal courts have blocked the ban, but the U.S. Supreme Court allowed it to take effect in June with some restrictions. The system replaces the president's previous, widely opposed directive, which took aim at immigrants and refugees from six Muslim-majority countries - though most of those governments are still covered under Trump's new approach.

The latest proclamation says North Korea does not cooperate with the US government in any respect and fails to satisfy all information-sharing requirements.

Citizens of Iran will not be eligible for tourism and business visas, but remain eligible for student and cultural exchange visas if they undergo additional scrutiny.

The Trump administration has unveiled new travel restrictions on certain foreigners from Chad, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Somalia, Syria, Venezuela and Yemen as a replacement to a central portion of its controversial travel ban signed earlier this year.

Mr. Trump tweeted shortly after the proclamation's release, writing "Making America Safe is my number one priority". Sudan, which was included in the original travel ban, was removed from the list.

The Trump administration on Sunday night asked the high court to considering hearing new briefing on the case before the oral argument to address "the effects of the proclamation on the issues now pending before the court in these cases".

Trump's administration has said the ban is critical to national security, while opponents have argued it violates the U.S. Constitution's religious protections.

The announcement comes on the same day Mr Trump's temporary ban on visitors from six Muslim-majority countries is set to expire, 90 days after it went into effect.

Almost 200 countries were evaluated, with Trump saying that the countries subject to the ban remain deficient with respect to their identity-management and information-sharing capabilities.

During the presidential campaign, Trump explicitly called for a ban on Muslims entering the country. The original travel ban had drawbacks and, hence, has changed with fresh inputs from security officials of other countries.

After the September 15 bombing attack on a London train, Trump wrote on Twitter that the new ban "should be far larger, tougher and more specific - but stupidly, that would not be politically correct". The Supreme Court is scheduled to hear oral arguments in the case on October 10.

Now the nine-justice court could skip deciding the case altogether, legal experts said.

  • Jon Douglas