President Donald Trump has identified the foreign governments which have failed to provide “baseline” identification about their citizens who ask for visas to travel to the United States.
The announcement clears the way for customs officials to deny visas to citizens of the countries, which are Chad, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Syria, Venezuela, and Yemen. In addition, citizens of Iraq and Somalia who request visas will also face extra scrutiny because of the religious and civil wars under in those two countries, says the new policy.
“Following an extensive review by the Department of Homeland Security, we are taking action today to protect the safety and security of the American people by establishing a minimum security baseline for entry into the United States,” Trump said in a statement. He continued:
We cannot afford to continue the failed policies of the past, which present an unacceptable danger to our country. My highest obligation is to ensure the safety and security of the American people, and in issuing this new travel order, I am fulfilling that sacred obligation.
The new policy will likely be described as a “Muslim Ban” by Islamic advocacy groups in the United States because seven of the nine countries in the announcement are predominantly Islamic. However, according to the Trump statement, all other countries — including roughly 60 countries with either partial or majority Muslim populations — complied with the new baseline requirements to share information about their citizens who request visas to visit the United States.