White House Adds Six More Countries to the Travel Bans List

By Proclamation, the Trump Administration expanded the “travel ban” to six more countries, effective February 21, 2020.

The six countries are Kyrgyzstan, Myanamar (Burma), Nigeria, Eritrea, Sudan, and Tanzania. The bans on Kyrgyzstan, Nigeria, Mynamar and Nigeria are for all immigrants, except Special Immigrants whose eligibility is based on having provided assistance to the U.S. Government. The Sudan and Tanzania bans apply to immigrants under the Diversity Lottery program.

The bans do not apply to “non-immigrants,” which include business visitors, tourists, students, scholars, temporary workers and other such “non-immigrant” visa categories. The bans also exempt U.S. citizens and green card holders, parolees before the effective date, those already granted asylum/refugee status, diplomats and dual nationals.

Waivers are possible but will be difficult to acquire, based on experience under the existing travel bans. The standard for a waiver grant is a showing of undue hardship if entry was denied, absence of national security threat, and a showing that entry is in the national interest.

The Administration justifies the bans based on a study of security risks and certain security requirements.

These countries now join Libya, Yemen, Iran, North Korea, Syria, Somalia, and Venezuela, which have had travel bans for certain classes of noncitizens since December, 2017.