Trump's attempt at restricting refugees rejected by appeals court
The Trump administration's efforts to temporarily ban most refugees from entering America has been rejected by a US appeals court. The court ruled that refugees having relations with an American resettlement agency, should be exempt from President Donald Trump's travel ban. The ruling reopens America's door to thousands of refugees and marks the latest legal blow to the president's controversial travel ban.
Relatives of US citizens from banned countries allowed to visit
The three-judge panel at the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Seattle also ruled that grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins of legal U.S. residents, who hailed from six mainly-Muslim countries, are exempt from Trump's travel ban.
Supreme Court had allowed enforcement of parts of travel ban
In June, the US Supreme Court ruled that parts of Trump's travel ban on individuals from six predominantly-Muslim countries and all refugees could be implemented on a limited basis. However, it ruled that individuals having a "bona fide relationship with a person or entity in the United States" would be exempt. However, it didn't define what a "bona fide relationship" constitutes.
Loophole allowed Trump administration to block some refugees, relatives
The Trump administration defined "bona fide relationship" as immediate family members and in-laws, but not grandparents, cousins, aunts and uncles. Refugees linked to American resettlement agencies too didn't constitute "bona fide relationship." The state of Hawaii challenged the Trump administration's interpretation. A lower court judge ruled in favor of Hawaii. The Trump administration appealed to the appeals court. The court ruled against the administration.
What the court of appeals ruling stated?
The court of appeals stated that the Trump administration didn't provide a "persuasive explanation for why a mother-in-law is clearly a bona fide relationship… but grandchild, aunt, uncle, niece, nephew, or cousin is not." It ruled that in a refugee's case, written assurances by a resettlement agency and its advanced preparation and expenditure for the refugee's settlement in America represents a "bona fide relationship."