NAICU Washington Update

Limited Travel Ban Takes Effect

July 07, 2017

A modified version of the travel ban proposed by the Trump Administration went into effect on June 29, after the Supreme Court allowed parts of the executive order to be reinstated.  The ban will be in effect for 90 days.

The ban will affect travelers from six predominantly Muslim countries, including Iran, Syria, Somalia, Yemen, Libya, and Sudan.  Travelers from these countries must have a “bona fide” relationship with a person or entity in the U.S. in order to travel to the U.S. 

The White House has included more specifics on who exactly qualifies as having a “bona fide” relationship to a person in the U.S., hoping to avoid the chaos that resulted from the original executive order in January. Under the modified ban, travelers from the six countries can only come to the U.S. to visit spouses, a fiancé or fiancée, parents, (including in-laws), and children (including adult and young children and step or half siblings, and sons- or daughters-in-law).

The policy excludes entry for visiting cousins, grandparents, grandchildren, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, and brothers- and sisters-in-laws.

When it comes to a person’s connection to a business or organization, the administration said that it must be formally documented and not formed for the purposes of evading the executive order.  For example, foreign students who attend a U.S. school, or faculty, researchers, or lecturers invited to speak at a U.S. college or university, would be allowed entry. However, a newly established refugee assistance organization would not qualify.

Senior administration officials have also indicated that determinations will be made on a case-by-case basis, making it possible that other relationships or reasons for travel might be approved.  While this is considered a win for President Trump, it is a much narrower directive than the prior two blocked travel bans and his campaign promise to ban all Muslims from entering the U.S.


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