Senior administration officials announced the implementation process of Executive Order 13780 in an off-camera briefing Thursday afternoon.
From 8:00 pm EST tonight, the White House will officially begin the implementation of Executive Order 13870: “Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States.”
The Order places a 90-day ban on travelers from six designated countries (Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen), along with a 120 days ban on all refugees into the United States.
Additionally, the US will limit the inflow of refugees to 50,000 individuals per fiscal year. As of today, roughly 49,000 refugees have been admitted into the US this year.
This announcement comes only days after the Supreme Court removed two lower court injunctions on the Executive Order.
An exception to these travel restrictions includes visa applicants who have ties to people in the United States. Senior administration officials have identified family ties acceptable for the exemption to include parents, children, brothers, and sisters.
Grandparents, grandchildren, cousins, aunts, uncles and other relatives are not included under this Order. The White House based its definition of ‘family’ on the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), as well as the language in the Supreme Court ruling.
In addition to certain family members, ties to refugee resettlement agencies will not be sufficient to qualify for the exemption.
Students and university lecturers with ties to institutions will be able to travel to the United States.
All visas issued before the Order will be valid for travel and will be accepted at all US ports of entry. Previously scheduled visa appointments and interviews will be allowed to continue as planned.
Refugees that are in transit or have arranged (booked) plans to travel to the United States before July 6 will be able to do so. Entry of refugees into the US after July 6 will be handled on an individual basis.
In conjunction with the Presidential Memorandum from June 14, the Executive Order will be implemented through cooperation of at least three agencies. Enactment will involve case by case determinations by a consular official on who qualifies for entry. US officials have already been informed on how the Order is to be implemented.
The process of individual entry involves first applying for traditional screenings as dictated under the INA. Then, officials must see if applicants qualify under the new guidance. Finally, if deemed qualified, individuals will be subject to vetting.
The Court will hear arguments on the Order, which will likely occur in early October when the justices return from recess.
The administration has been informed of protesters and immigration attorneys who will likely be present at several ports of entry. As long these individuals remain in the public space, officials affirm that the ports will conduct business as usual.