Trump’s ban causes chaos
The entry ban for the refugees and people from seven Muslim countries is provoking shock waves, and mass protests have taken place at the US airports. A federal court had partially blocked the decree, which was signed by Donald Trump.
The disposition of the new United States President, Donald Trump, refusing refugees and people from seven states with a majority Muslim population for several months is causing violent political and legal turmoil in the US. Thousands flew spontaneously to the country’s major airports to protest the controversial decree and to solidify with affected travelers. Civil society organizations accused the president of betraying the constitution and provided lawyers in many places to legally support stranded passengers. Representatives of business and science opposed Trumps’ decision. The governing ministries, as well as the immigration authorities, were apparently unprepared for the order of the billionaire.
How unclear the situation was, as the US government suffered a delicate defeat at a New York court late Saturday night. After a complaint from civil rights lawyers, a federal judge ruled that visitors from the countries affected by the ban could not be deported to their homeland since Friday in the USA. They did not receive a collective entry permit at first, but their situation remains unclear for many people concerned. Immigration and civil rights organizations celebrated the decision still in the evening as an important part in the fight against Trumps decree and called for further protests on Sunday.
The court decision of the Saturday evening is valid for the entire US, that is, for all people who were prevented from leaving the transit area after their arrival due to the arrangements of the new US President at US airports. Exact numbers of how many passengers were affected did not exist until the evening. About 100 people, who had been detained at US airports, spoke in the evening. On the Kennedy Airport in New York alone and at the international airports of Chicago and Houston, more than 30 foreigners were intercepted on the entry.
“No one here has a clue what is going on”
The decree had triggered shock waves throughout the country immediately after Trump signed such a powerful and even racists decree, and caused international indignation. On Friday, the US President announced that the visa would be suspended for a period of 90 days for the people from the six majority Muslim countries of Iraq, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria and Sudan. Refugees are to be denied entry for three months, while Syrian refugees are forced to leave the country indefinitely. Trump justified the measures with a view to “radical Islamic terrorists”. Some countries in the region, including Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Egypt, are not affected by the rules. Trump’s own company is active in them as critics see a connection.
Trump’s critics were concerned about the fact that the scheme was to be applied also to persons with a valid residence permit, so for the citizens who had already lived and worked with a so-called green card in the USA for some time but were at the time of Trumps signature but outside America. This passage of the decree also apparently met the most important ministries unprepared. Neither the Ministry of Foreign Affairs nor the Ministry of Homeland Security had been initiated into the formulation of the order. “Nobody has any idea what is going on,” NBC quoted a high-ranking official.
EU citizens with dual citizenship who have a passport of one of the seven countries are also affected. The British Tory deputy, Nadhim Zahawi (Iraq) and Green Bundestag deputy Omid Nouripour (Iran) both say they can no longer enter the United States. The pressure on Europe’s leaders is growing, to distance themselves from the Trump’s policy.
Trump’s decree falls into a very tense situation in the US. Since his swearing in, the President has been trying to correct the course of the United States quickly. His plans to build a wall on the border with Mexico have also been a source of heated debate for days. Already last weekend in the capital and other large metropolitan cities, hundreds of thousands of Americans went on the streets to protest against the 70-year-old.
The sudden validity of the radical ban on entry at many airports caused emotional scenes and confusion. From Iraqis, Yemenis, and Sudanese, passengers with valid visas were stopped shortly before their departure at home airports or on their way to the United States. Families were waiting for relatives up to 15 hours.
Trump’s opponents organized themselves within a few hours via the social networks, email lists and calls from civil society organizations. Already at noon, many protesters had gathered at New York’s Kennedy Airport to protest against the scheme. By evening, the protest in New York swelled to a few thousand people. In San Francisco, there were seat strikes in the area of luggage collection. There were also protests at the Dulles Airport near Washington DC. In addition, around three dozen lawyers were waiting outside the area of arrival for international flights to provide legal assistance to the stranded people. “We remain so long until we can reach them,” said a representative of the ACLU civil rights organization. Hours of speech echoed through the terminal. All protests remained peaceful.
Trump: Measures work “very nicely”
The debate is likely to drive the already divided country even further apart. The issue of immigration touches on the question of the identity of the country. It is remarkable how deep the protests go against Trumps decree. More than 4,000 scientists published a protest against the entry stop. Trump also took steps in the economy for massive unrest. Apparently, because of the fear that some of their own employees might be affected by the scheme, large tech companies criticized the president’s move. “I share your concerns,” wrote Apple CEO Tim Cook in an email to his staff. “but this is not a policy we support.” Tesla’s Elon Musk also opposed the president. Google called on its employees to travel quickly to the US while the co-founder Sergey Brin participated in the protests at the San Francisco airport.
Among the leading Republicans, most of whom had been vehemently opposed to Trump’s proposal in the election campaign, there were also isolated critical voices. Paul Ryan, however, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, had already expressly declared the measure to be meaningful on Friday. Vice President Mike Pence has not been up to now.
Trump was intrigued by the turmoil on Saturday. The billionaire denied the arguments that indicated the decree had not been sufficiently and judicially examined before his signature. At a meeting in White House, he stressed that the measures worked “very nicely” – one could observe this at the airports. The President will only abolish the prohibitions if “appropriate” verification mechanisms in his view ensure that no “radical Islamic terrorists” enter the United States.