U.S. President Donald Trump’s executive order has thrown citizens from seven Muslim-majority countries into confusion about who can travel to the U.S., and when – and that has broad consequences for Canada and the world. Check back here for details and links to resources that might help
What’s going on?
On Jan. 27, U.S. President Donald Trump – who ran for office on a promise to bar Muslims from entering the country – issued an executive order temporarily blocking entry by citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries. (The full text of the order is here.)
Who’s been affected by the ban?
Citizens from seven Muslim-majority countries: Iranian, Iraqi, Libyan, Somali, Sudanese, Syrian and Yemeni citizens are barred from entering the United States for 90 days after the executive order was issued, which means the ban would end April 27. Syrians won’t be able to get visas until Mr. Trump, who alleges that the current vetting system is vulnerable to terrorism, has signed off on new screening measures.
Refugees: All refugee admissions have been put on hold for 120 days, a period that ends May 27, though Syrian refugee processing is suspended indefinitely. The executive order also halves the number of refugees the United States plans to admit this budget year, to 50,000 people from 110,000. Last year, the country accepted 84,995 refugees.
Who can still travel across the U.S. border?
American citizens: Immigrants from the seven countries can cross as usual with U.S. passports if they have them.
Green card holders: In the ban’s initial days, there was much confusion over whether citizens of the seven countries with documents proving U.S. permanent residency – widely known as “green cards” – would be barred or not. Border officials detained several green-card holders at airports, but after public outcry over the executive order, the White House and Homeland Security changed tack, saying permanent residents could still cross the border. But the order also gives border officials broad powers to screen and question visitors, and Homeland Security chief John Kelly said permanent residency would be a “dispositive factor in our case-by-case determination.”
More information on Globe and Mail