A federal judge in Wisconsin on Friday dealt the first legal blow to US President Donald Trump’s revised travel ban, barring enforcement of the policy to deny entry to the wife and child of a Syrian refugee already granted asylum in the US.
The temporary restraining order, granted by US District Judge William Conley, applies only to the family of the Syrian refugee, who brought the case anonymously to protect the identities of his wife and daughter, still living in the war-torn Syrian city of Aleppo.
However, it represents the first of several challenges brought against Trump’s newly amended executive order, issued on Monday and due to go into effect on Thursday, to draw a court ruling in opposition to its enforcement.
Conley, chief judge of the federal court in Wisconsin’s western district and an appointee of former US president Barack Obama, concluded the plaintiff “has presented some likelihood of success on the merits” of his case and that his family faces “significant risk of irreparable harm” if forced to remain in Syria.
The plaintiff, a Sunni Muslim, fled Syria to the US in 2014 to “escape near-certain death” at the hands of sectarian military forces fighting the Syrian government in Aleppo, according to his lawsuit.
He subsequently obtained asylum for his wife and their only surviving child, a daughter, and their application had cleared the security vetting process and was headed for final processing when it was halted by Trump’s original travel ban on Jan. 27.
That executive order sought to ban admission to the US of citizens from seven Muslim-majority countries — Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Yemen and Iraq — for 120 days and to suspend entry of all refugees indefinitely.
The original travel ban, which caused widespread chaos and protests at airports when first implemented, was rescinded after the state of Washington won a nationwide federal court order blocking further enforcement of the policy.
The modified order removed Iraq from the list and lifted the indefinite refugee travel ban for Syrians. However, opponents from several states have gone to court seeking to halt its implementation as well.
“The court appreciates that there may be important differences between the original executive order, and the revised executive order,” Conley wrote in his decision. “As the order applies to the plaintiff here, however, the court finds his claims have at least some chance of prevailing for the reasons articulated by other courts.”
In a related development on Friday, the federal judge in Seattle who imposed a nationwide injunction on enforcement of the original travel ban refused a request to apply that order to the revised policy, saying that lawyers from states opposed to the measure needed to file more extensive court papers.
TARNISHED LEGACY: Woodrow Wilson served as the university’s president before becoming the US’ 28th leader, but his racism was ‘significant and consequential’ Princeton University is removing former US president Woodrow Wilson’s name from its public policy school and one of its residential colleges after trustees concluded that the 28th president’s “racist thinking and policies” made him “an inappropriate namesake.” The Ivy League school’s trustees made the decision on Friday, according to a statement on Saturday. It comes at a time of widespread rethinking of the US’ racial legacy. The Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement, energized by a series of high-profile deaths of black Americans, has resulted in the removal of Confederate monuments, flags and symbols of racism across the US. Deleting Wilson’s name at Princeton
‘FULLY ENCLOSED’: Residents of Anxin County would be confined to their homes and would only be allowed out once a day to buy necessities such as food and medicine China yesterday imposed a strict lockdown on nearly half a million people near the capital to contain a fresh COVID-19 cluster as authorities warned the outbreak was still “severe and complicated.” After China largely brought the virus under control, hundreds have been infected in Beijing and cases have emerged in Hebei Province. Health officials said that Anxin County — about 150km from Beijing — would be “fully enclosed and controlled,” the same strict measures imposed at the height of the pandemic in the city of Wuhan earlier this year. Only one person from each family would be allowed to go out once a
Japan said it opposed changes to the G7 nations as it pushed back against a reform plan by US President Donald Trump that would have rival South Korea this year join in an expanded meeting. Tokyo has told the US it stands against South Korea’s participation on the grounds of differences in policy on China and North Korea, Kyodo News reported this weekend, citing more than one source related to Japanese and US diplomacy. Japan also wants to maintain its status as the only Asian country in the group, the news agency added. Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga yesterday told reporters that
The onset of summer has sparked a rise in incidents of “mask rage” in South Korea as more hot and bothered commuters either refuse to wear face coverings or leave parts of their faces exposed. In South Korea, Japan and other countries in East Asia, widespread mask wearing has been cited as one possible explanation for the region’s relative success in bringing the COVID-19 pandemic under control. South Korea, one of the first countries outside China to be affected by the virus, flattened the coronavirus curve in April, although it is now struggling with dozens of daily cases, mainly in and around