President Trump signed a new Executive Order on March 6, 2017, relating to travel of foreign nationals from certain countries. This Executive Order is titled "Protecting the Nation From Foreign Terrorist Entry Into the United States." This Executive Order replaces the earlier version issued January 27, 2017. The new Executive Order becomes effective March 16, 2017 at midnight Eastern time.
Under the new Executive Order, there is a 90-day temporary suspension for entry of nationals from six countries: Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. This suspension begins on the effective date, March 16. The 90-day temporary suspension applies only to foreign nationals from the six countries i) outside the US on the effective date of the order that ii) did not have a valid visa on January 27 and do not have a valid visa as of March 6, 2017.
The Executive Order exempts certain categories of foreign nationals including:
Iraq is no longer on the list of countries subject to the 90-day suspension. However, the Executive Order indicates that additional scrutiny may be applied to applications from Iraqi nationals for visa, admission, or immigration benefits based on suspected ties to ISIS or other terrorist organizations.
Under the new Executive Order, travel of refugees under the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program (USRAP) is suspended for 120 days. Exceptions can be processed under the waiver process listed below.
The Executive Order indicates that U.S. Consular Officials or Customs and Border Protection Officials (or their designees) can grant a visa on a case-by-case basis if the foreign national can demonstrate denial of entry would create undue hardship, would not pose a threat to national security, and would be in the national interest. It is not clear how the waiver process would work on the ground e.g. at an airport, in advance of travel, etc. However, the Order lists examples of reasons for a waiver including:
The Order indicates that the Department of Homeland Security, Department of State, and other federal agencies will also be reviewing several issues and requesting information from other countries. The Executive Order indicates that information received may result in the President recommending additional countries for "inclusion in a Presidential proclamation that would prohibit the entry of appropriate categories of foreign nationals of countries."