On March 6, 2017, the President signed a new Executive Order entitled, “Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States.” The new Executive Order will take effect on March 16, 2017 and expressly revokes the January 27, 2017 Executive Order of the same title.
The new Executive Order prohibits entry into the U.S. by immigrants and visitors from six predominantly Muslim countries without requiring any individualized determination based on specific information that the individuals are a security risk. The Executive Order exempts certain categories of people, including lawful permanent residents and dual nationals traveling on a passport from a country that is not one of the six designated countries.
In addition, the new Executive Order suspends refugee resettlement to the United States for 120 days and drastically reduces the number of refugees that the U.S. Refugee Assistance Program will resettle in fiscal year 2017 from 110,000 to 50,000. Syrian refugees are no longer indefinitely banned under the new Executive Order, however, they are subject to the 120-day suspension of the refugee program. The new Executive Order no longer gives preference to individuals facing religious persecution who practice minority religions in their country of nationality.
The New Executive Order will dramatically impact travel to the United States and visa issuance abroad for those groups identified in it. Please consult one of our attorneys to discuss the options available to you, your friends, your colleagues and your family members. We are here to provide support during these uncertain times.