Iraq parliament approves ‘reciprocity’ to US ban

Demonstrators crowd the international terminal as they protest against President Donald Trump's travel ban on refugees and citizens of seven Muslim-majority nations, at San Francisco International Airport on Sunday, Jan. 29, 2017. (AP Photo/Olga Rodriguez)

LONDON (AP) – The Latest on President Donald Trump, his travel ban on seven Muslim-majority countries and other immigration actions (all times local):

12:15 p.m. – Doctors Without Borders says U.S. President Donald Trump’s executive order suspending entry for refugees from Syria into the United States is putting lives in danger.

The Paris-based advocacy group says Trump’s order “will effectively keep people trapped in war zones, directly endangering their lives.”

Doctors Without Borders, also known by its French-language acronym MSF, called Trump’s order “an inhumane act against people fleeing war zones.”

It called on the U.S. government to lift the ban, end the exclusion from specific countries, and to restart the resettlement of refugees.

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12:10 p.m. – The U.S. Embassies in London and Berlin have advised people from the seven countries affected by President Donald Trump’s travel ban not to seek a visa, or schedule an appointment – even if they are a dual nationals.

The statement posted on the London embassy’s website on Monday issued the guidance to “aliens from the countries of Iraq, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen.”

It says, “if you are a national, or dual national, of one of these countries, please do not schedule a visa appointment or pay any visa fees at this time.”

There has been widespread confusion about whether the ban applied to dual nationals.

The embassy did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

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11:55 a.m. – Two lawmakers say that the Iraqi parliament has approved a “reciprocity measure” after U.S. President Donald Trump’s executive order temporarily banning citizens from Iraq and six other Muslim-majority countries from entering the United States.

The measure, adopted by lawmakers at a Monday session of parliament, is to apply to Americans entering Iraq.

Lawmakers Kamil al-Ghrairi and Mohammed Saadoun told The Associated Press that decision is binding for the government. Both say the decision was passed by a majority votes in favor but couldn’t offer specific numbers. No further details were available on the wording of the parliament decision.

It was also not immediately clear who the ban will apply to – American military personnel, non-government and aid workers, oil companies and other Americans doing business in Iraq.

It was also not known if and how the Iraqi measure would affect cooperation in the fight against the Islamic State group in Mosul.

Trump’s order includes a 90-day ban on travel to the U.S. by citizens of Iraq, Syria, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia and Yemen, and a 120-day suspension of the U.S. refugee program.

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11:20 a.m. – A spokesman for the German foreign ministry says “tens of thousands” of people are likely to be affected by the recent U.S. travel ban.

An executive order issued Friday by U.S. President Donald Trump temporarily restricts entry to America of people from seven majority-Muslim countries.

Foreign ministry spokesman Martin Schaefer says Germany is trying to understand the practical implications for its citizens who also hold a passport from one of the affected countries. He told reporters in Berlin on Monday that Germany hoped to receive further “clarity” from Washington in the coming hours.

Chancellor Angela Merkel had expressed regret Sunday about Trump’s decision, but refrained from condemning it.

Her spokesman, Steffen Seibert, said Monday that Merkel intended to “work for a good German-American relationship.”

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11:00 a.m. – British Prime Minister Theresa May’s office says that a state visit to Britain by U.S. President Donald Trump later this year will go ahead, despite increasing calls for it to be canceled over his temporary ban on residents of seven majority-Muslim countries entering the U.S.

Her office says “an invitation has been extended and accepted.”

No date has been announced for the state visit, which involves lavish pomp and ceremony, often with a stay at Buckingham Palace hosted by Queen Elizabeth II.

An online petition on a government website has attracted more than 1 million signatures opposing the trip. Protests against the travel ban are planned Monday in London and other British cities.

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10:50 a.m. – Iran’s senior vice president is calling President Trump’s executive order on travel and visa process ban “illegal, inhumane and against human rights.”

The official IRNA news agency Monday quotes Ishaq Jahangiri as saying the order should be reviewed at the international level.

Jahangiri says: “We will definitely take stance against this illegal, inhumane and anti-human-rights activity in international bodies. And once again (we) will review and explore American human rights in international bodies in order to let the world to know what a system they are facing.”

He did not elaborate.

The executive order suspended issuing visas for people from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria or Yemen for at least 90 days.

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10:40 a.m. – The world’s largest body of Islamic nations has told The Associated Press that it has “grave concern” over U.S. President Donald Trump’s order banning travelers from seven Muslim-majority countries.

The 57-nation Organization of Islamic Cooperation issued a statement Monday to the AP warning that “such selective and discriminatory acts will only serve to embolden the radical narratives of extremists and will provide further fuel to the advocates of violence and terrorism.”

It called upon the U.S. to “reconsider this blanket statement and maintain its moral obligation to provide leadership and hope at a time of great uncertainty and unrest in the world.”

The 90-day ban, imposed Friday, affects travel to the U.S. by citizens of Iraq, Syria, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia and Yemen. All are OIC members.

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10:30 a.m. – Air France has blocked 15 passengers from Muslim countries from traveling to the U.S. because they would have been refused entry under President Donald Trump’s new immigration ban.

Air France said in a statement it was informed Saturday by the U.S. government of the new restrictions, and had no choice but to stop the passengers from boarding U.S.-bound flights.

An airline spokeswoman said Monday that the passengers were taken back to their point of departure or otherwise taken care of. She would not provide the passengers’ names, nationalities or other details.

The passengers were from seven Muslim-majority countries affected by the three-month immigration ban: Iraq, Syria, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia and Yemen.

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6:42 a.m. – Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr expressed dismay over President Donald Trump’s executive order that bans citizens of seven majority Muslim countries from entering the United States.

Kerr spoke about the administration’s travel ban following a 113-111 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers on Sunday night, calling it a “horrible idea.”

“As someone whose family member was a victim of terrorism, having lost my father, if we’re trying to combat terrorism by banishing people from coming to this country, by really going against the principals of what our country’s about and creating fear, it’s the wrong way to go about it,” Kerr said. “If anything, we could be breeding anger and terror.

“I think it’s shocking. I think it’s a horrible idea. I feel for all the people who are affected. Families are being torn apart and I worry in the big picture what this means to the security of the world.”

Malcolm Kerr was murdered while he was the American University president in Beirut when Steve Kerr was 18 and a freshman at the University of Arizona.

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3:57 a.m. – The president of Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., says in a letter to students, faculty and staff that Trump’s executive order troubles him.

President John Gioia wrote: “The implications of this order are significant and concerning. We are an institution that values the contributions of our international students, staff, and faculty, and we are deeply committed to interreligious dialogue and providing a context in which members of all faith backgrounds are welcomed and encouraged to practice their faith.”

He also said “members of our community from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen legally residing in the United States avoid travel outside the U.S. during this period and consult an immigration attorney if travel is required.”

 

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