Trump refugee ban causes chaos, panic, anger worldwide

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Donald Trump's sweeping ban on people seeking refuge in the United States and visitors from seven Muslim-majority countries caused confusion and panic among travelers on Saturday, with some turned back from U.S.-bound flights.

Immigration lawyers in New York sued to block the order, saying numerous people have already been unlawfully detained.

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Trump's refugee, immigration orders causing problems at airports
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Trump's refugee, immigration orders causing problems at airports
A woman greets her mother after she arrived from Dubai on Emirates Flight 203 at John F. Kennedy International Airport in Queens, New York, U.S., January 28, 2017. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
A woman exits immigration after arriving from Dubai on Emirates Flight 203 at John F. Kennedy International Airport in Queens, New York, U.S., January 28, 2017. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly
People exit immigration after arriving from Dubai on Emirates Flight 203 at John F. Kennedy International Airport in Queens, New York, U.S., January 28, 2017. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly
A woman waits for family to arrive at John F. Kennedy International Airport in Queens, New York, U.S., January 28, 2017. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly
Women check their luggage after arriving on a flight from Dubai on Emirates Flight 203 at John F. Kennedy International Airport in Queens, New York, U.S., January 28, 2017. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly
Mark Doss, Supervising Attorney for the International Refugee Assistance Project at the Urban Justice Center speaks on his cell phone at John F. Kennedy International Airport in Queens, New York, U.S., January 28, 2017. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly
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The new Republican president on Friday put a four-month hold on allowing refugees into the United States and temporarily barred travelers from Syria and six other Muslim-majority countries. He said the moves would protect Americans from terrorism.

The executive order prompted fury from Arab travelers in the Middle East and North Africa who said it was humiliating and discriminatory. It drew widespread criticism from U.S. Western allies including France and Germany, Arab American groups, human rights organizations.

"This is a stupid, terrible decision which will hurt the American people more than us or anybody else, because it shows that this President can't manage people, politics or global relationships," said Najeed Haidari, a Yemeni-American security manager for an oil company in the Yemeni capital Sanaa.

The bans affect travelers with passports from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen and even extends to green card holders who are granted authorization to live and work in the United States, according to a Department of Homeland Security spokeswoman.

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Stories of refugees turned away from US for #HolocaustRemembranceDay
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Stories of refugees turned away from US for #HolocaustRemembranceDay
My name is Carl Simon. The US turned me away at the border in 1939. I was murdered at Sobibor https://t.co/B7f3lvWAts
My name is Fritz Joseph. The US turned me away at the border in 1939. I was murdered at Auschwitz
My name is Brigitte Joseph. The US turned me away at the border in 1939. I was murdered at Auschwitz
My name is Frieda Joseph. The US turned me away at the border in 1939. I was murdered at Auschwitz
My name is Justin Isner. The US turned me away at the border in 1939. I was murdered at Auschwitz
My name is Ilse Karliner. The US turned me away at the border in 1939. I was murdered at Auschwitz https://t.co/qkD7dP4pbt
My name is Max Hammerschlag. The US turned me away at the border in 1939. I was murdered at Leitmeritz
My name is Bertha Ellen Grünthal. The US turned me away at the border in 1939. I was murdered at Auschwitz https://t.co/PyMnWXdpiW
My name is Margot Hirsch. The US turned me away at the border in 1939. I was murdered at Auschwitz https://t.co/uwMRFqxOya
My name is Jakob Köppel. The US turned me away at the border in 1939. I was murdered at France https://t.co/j46MM897gQ
My name is Amalie Herz. The US turned me away at the border in 1939. I was murdered at Belgium
My name is Dorothea Heymann. The US turned me away at the border in 1939. I was murdered at Auschwitz
My name is Josef Köppel. The US turned me away at the border in 1939. I was murdered at Auschwitz https://t.co/qREiM2XwnN
My name is Julius Hermanns. The US turned me away at the border in 1939. I was murdered at Auschwitz https://t.co/A4nmdb8ho3
My name is Ruthild Grünthal. The US turned me away at the border in 1939. I was murdered at Theresienstadt https://t.co/pxYclNerap
My name is Horst-Martin Grünthal. The US turned me away at the border in 1939. I was murdered at Auschwitz https://t.co/Xh1oZCtJak
My name is Kurt Stein. The US turned me away at the border in 1939. I was murdered at Auschwitz https://t.co/iXeW5SGECu
My name is Ina Finkelstein. The US turned me away at the border in 1939. I was murdered at Sobibor
My name is Manfred Fink. The US turned me away at the border in 1939. I was murdered at Bergen-Belsen https://t.co/2LFnB5yp3n
My name is Alex Goldschmidt. The US turned me away at the border in 1939. I was murdered at Auschwitz https://t.co/80HlGGNiO1
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In Cairo, five Iraqi passengers and one Yemeni were barred from boarding an EgyptAir flight to New York on Saturday, sources at Cairo airport said.

The passengers, arriving in transit to Cairo airport, were stopped and re-directed to flights headed for their home countries despite holding valid visas, the sources said.

Lawyers from numerous immigration organizations and the American Civil Liberties Union sued in federal court in Brooklyn on behalf of two Iraqi men, one a former U.S. government worker and the other the husband of a former U.S. security contractor.

The two men had visas to enter the United States but were detained on Friday night at New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport, hours after Trump's executive order, the lawsuit said.

Customs and border patrol agents at many airports were unaware of the executive order early on in the evening, said Mana Yegani, an immigration lawyer in Houston, who works with the American Immigration Lawyers Association.

Yegani and her fellow lawyers worked through the night fielding calls from travelers with student and worker visas who were being denied entry into the United States and ordered on flights back to Muslim-majority countries on the list.

Green card holders were also being stopped and questioned for several hours. Officials also denied travelers with dual Canadian and Iranian citizenship from boarding planes in Canada that were headed the United States, she said.

"These are people that are coming in legally. They have jobs here and they have vehicles here," Yegani said.

Those with visas from Muslim-majority countries have gone through background checks with U.S. authorities, Yegani noted.

"Just because Trump signed something at 6 p.m. yesterday, things are coming to a crashing halt," she said. "It's scary."

Trump senior adviser Kellyanne Conway reaffirmed the president's decision in a Twitter post on Saturday.

"@POTUS is a man of action and impact. Promises made, promises kept. Shock to the system. And he's just getting started," she tweeted.

(Additional reporting by Brendan O'Brien in Milwaukee, David Ingram in New York and Roberta Rampton in Washington; Writing by Doina Chiacu; Editing by Mary Milliken)

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