For Syrian Refugees, It's Still a Ban

October 26, 2017

At the conclusion of the 120-day ban on refugee resettlement imposed in March, the Administration issued yet another Executive Order (EO) on October 24 which would restart the United States Refugee Admissions Program (USRAP) except for refugees from 11 mostly Muslim-majority countries.  Syria is one of these countries.

 

These eleven nationalities comprise roughly half of refugee arrivals in Fiscal Year 2017, and likely a higher percentage of those already in the Fiscal Year 2018 pipeline.  For these refugees, another 90-day review period, a hallmark of the new EO, will bar virtually all entries indefinitely. 

 

For all refugees, the EO adds multiple new onerous vetting requirements which will affect and delay nearly every refugee currently awaiting resettlement.  Because the new requirements are mandatory immediately, security checks will expire and/or need to be repeated, creating a domino effect of expiring validity periods. 

 

There is little question that this is another run at a Muslim ban and a refugee ban.

 

The federal courts have so far blocked overt travel and refugee bans on statutory and constitutional grounds.  The Administration now appears to be taking indirect routes to accomplish the same goals:  building a virtual wall that will grind resettlement to a halt and compromise safety and family reunification for some of the world’s most vulnerable populations. 

 

MFA will continue its advocacy to work towards the reversal of this new ban.

 

For more information, click the link below: 

"U.S. Resumes Taking in Refugees, but 11 Countries Face More Review" [The New York Times]

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Multifaith Alliance for Syrian Refugees is a project of the Tides Center 
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