Entrants Denied by Travel Ban Can Reapply for Visas

By on September 1, 2017
Protesters rallying against the travel ban.

Earlier this year, President Trump tried to implement his travel ban by brute force with an executive order, which left many individuals stranded in airports or sent back home during the tumultuous period before the ban was blocked.

Two individuals who were held up in JFK Airport in New York, Iraqi nationals Hameed Khalid Darweesh and Haider Sameer Abdulkhaleq Alshawi, subsequently sued the government. Earlier this week, the two parties reached a settlement in their case that will allow those who were originally denied as part of the original ban the opportunity to reapply for visa entry.

“Although the government dragged its feet for far too long, it has finally agreed to do the right thing and provide those excluded under the first Muslim ban with proper notice of their right to come to the United States,” said Lee Gelernt, the ACLU’s deputy director for the Immigration Rights Project.

According to the settlement, individuals who “provided contact information in visa applications” and “applied for admission at a port of entry in the United States, were found inadmissible solely as a result of the Executive Order, withdrew their applications for admission, and since their withdrawal have neither entered the U.S. nor sought a visa for future travel to the U.S.” will get letters from the State Department outlining how they can reapply for visas.

“It means a lot to me to be in America,” Darweesh said in a press release. “The United States is a great country because of its people. I’m glad that the lawsuit is over. Me and my family are safe. My kids go to school. We can now live a normal life. I suffered back home, but I have my rights now. I’m a human.”

In June, the Supreme Court allowed some portions of the travel ban to take effect. They will hear oral arguments in the case in October.