Washington, Mar 16 (EFE).- US President Donald Trump’s administration will appeal rulings by two federal judges who blocked his second attempt to institute a travel ban, the White House’s spokesman said Thursday.
“We intend to appeal the flawed rulings,” Sean Spicer said in his daily press briefing, referring to temporary stays issued by federal judges in Hawaii and Maryland.
Spicer said Trump had the authority to impose a 90-day ban on the issuance of visas to people from six Muslim-majority countries – Libya, Sudan, Somalia, Syria, Yemen and Iran – and halt the United States’ refugee program for 120 days.
“The danger (of terrorists entering the US) is real. And the law is clear,” said the White House spokesman, who added that the court in Hawaii did not quote the relevant statute in its ruling.
Spicer was referring to 8 U.S. Code 1182, which states that the president may suspend the entry of any aliens or class of aliens – by proclamation and for the length of time he deems necessary – if he finds their presence in the US would be detrimental to the country’s interests.
He added that the Trump administration was exploring all available options to vigorously defend the revised executive order.
Trump’s original travel ban suspended US entry for all refugees as well as travelers from a group of Muslim-majority countries: Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen.
Imposed on Jan. 27, it also was blocked by a federal judge.
Among the alterations made in the revised order were the removal of Iraq from the list of targeted nations and an exemption for lawful permanent residents and travelers who obtained US visas ahead of the Jan. 27 announcement.
The revised order also does not indefinitely bar Syrian refugees from entering the US.
The federal judges who issued the latest stays found that Trump’s order did not offer solid evidence of a terrorist threat and was unconstitutional because it discriminated against people on the basis of their religion.