Federal Judges Refuse To Reinstate Trump's Travel Ban

Donald Trump press conference Donald Trump Shinzo Abe Donald Trump February 10

A federal appeals court was expected to rule on Wednesday (local time) on Mr Trump's United States travel ban on people from seven Muslim-majority countries, one day after questioning whether the order unfairly targeted people over their religion.

The ruling by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals comes after a federal judge in Seattle issued a temporary restraining order last Friday that effectively blocked it from being implemented.

Mr Trump's executive order, signed on 27 January, imposed a 120-day halt on refugees entering the USA and barred citizens from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen for 90 days.

The Department of Justice has filed a brief with the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, responding to a legal challenge to President Trump's executive order on immigration.

The court refused to block the lower court's ruling that suspended the ban, and allowed travelers who had been barred from entering the return, the Associated Press reported. Trump has used Twitter to assail Robart - a George W. Bush appointee - calling him a "so-called" judge and saying his decision has "open [ed] up our country to potential terrorists and others that do not have our best interests at heart".

The appeals court ruling Thursday means that travelers from those seven countries will continue to be allowed into the USA with valid visas.

The President was angry that his emergency appeal to overturn Judge James Robart's ruling was denied. The lawyer then cited the example of the terrorist group al-Shabaab based in Somalia and insisted that "the president of the USA has the authority to suspend entry of foreigners into the country in the interests of national security".

In also said: "Interesting that certain Middle-Eastern countries agree with the ban". Some travelers reported being asked about religious affiliations and even about their views on the Trump administration.

"[He] would not have resorted to hateful, anti-Islamic rhetoric to justify a ban on travel from seven mostly Muslim countries", he said.

Ultimately the matter is likely to go to the US Supreme Court. Three federal judges heard oral arguments Tuesday to determine whether the travel ban would be reinstated.

The state of Washington's solicitor general, Noah Purcell, is arguing for the states, and August Flentje, from the Justice Department, is arguing for the federal government.

"I don't ever want to call a court biased", he said.

It sparked protests and chaos at U.S. and overseas airports in the weekend that followed.