US civil rights, Muslim groups denounce US President Donald Trump’s revised travel ban

March 7, 2017 12:00 pm

Travelers ride the AirTran to the international terminal at John F. Kennedy International Airport, on March 6, 2017, in New York City. (Photo by AFP)

President ’s revised travel ban has drawn criticism from several civil rights and Muslim groups, which denounce the order as “discriminatory and unconstitutional.”
Condemnations poured in on Monday shortly after the new US president signed the revised order after his January’s directive faced multiple challenges in the courts in many states in the country.
The American Civil Liberties Union said there were about 12 lawsuits in courts around the country which it would amend to challenge Trump’s new executive order.
“The Trump administration has conceded that its original Muslim ban was indefensible. Unfortunately, it has replaced it with a scaled-back version that shares the same fatal flaws,” said Omar Jadwat, the director of the civil rights group, in a statement.
“The only way to actually fix the Muslim ban is not to have a Muslim ban,” he added. “Instead, President Trump has recommitted himself to religious discrimination, and he can expect continued disapproval from both the courts and the people.”

This photo taken on January 23, 2017 shows US President Donald Trump signing an executive order. (Photo by AFP)

The new directive bans citizens of six Muslim-majority countries from entering the US, but removes Iraq from the original list. It will maintain a 90-day entry ban on citizens of Iran, Libya, Syria, Somalia, Sudan, and Yemen.
The Monday decree was also slammed by other rights groups, including Human Rights Watch, the Interfaith Alliance, the United Farm Workers of America, and The New York Immigration Coalition.
Referring to the new executive order as “merely cosmetic,” Human Rights Watch said, “President Trump still seems to believe you can determine who’s a terrorist by knowing which country a man, woman or child is from.”
The New York Immigration Coalition described the revised ban as “a mask for the same old hatred, fear and incompetence.”
Rabbi Jack Moline, the executive director of the nonprofit Interfaith Alliance, said that “Even in its slightly revised form, President Trump’s Muslim ban violates constitutional principles and undermines America’s standing in the world.” “We must be clear that discriminating against millions of people on the basis of their religion does nothing to make Americans safer.”
Trump has argued that the restrictive measures are necessary to prevent terrorist attacks on US soil, rejecting criticism that they single out people based on their religion. Regardless of the changes, the new restrictions will likely renew the controversy generated by the fist measure.
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