A federal judge in Seattle on Saturday partially lifted a Trump administration ban on certain refugees after two groups argued which the policy prevented people coming from some mostly Muslim countries coming from reuniting with family living legally inside United States.
U.S. District Judge James Robart heard arguments Thursday in lawsuits coming from the American Civil Liberties Union along with also also Jewish Family Service, which say the ban causes irreparable harm along with also also puts some people at risk. Government lawyers argued which the ban can be needed to protect national security.
Robart ordered the federal government to process certain refugee applications. He said his order applies to people “that has a bona fide relationship to a person or entity within the United States.”
President Donald Trump restarted the refugee program in October “with enhanced vetting capabilities.”
The day before his executive order, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, Acting Homeland Security Secretary Elaine Duke along with also also Director of National Intelligence Daniel Coats sent a memo to Trump saying certain refugees must be banned unless additional security measures are implemented.
the idea applies to the spouses along with also also minor children of refugees who have already settled inside U.S. along with also also suspends the refugee program for people coming coming from 11 countries, nine of which are mostly Muslim.
In his decision, Robart wrote which “former officials detailed concretely how the Agency Memo will harm the United States’ national security along with also also foreign policy interests.”
Robart said his order restores refugee procedures in programs to what they were before the memo along with also also noted which This kind of already includes very thorough vetting of individuals.
In a statement, Department of Justice spokeswoman Lauren Ehrsam said: “We disagree with the Court’s ruling along with also also are currently evaluating the next steps.”
The ACLU argued the memo provided no evidence for why additional security was needed along with also also didn’t specify a timeframe for implementing the adjustments. The groups say the process for imposing the policy violated a federal law.
August Flentje, a Justice Department attorney, told the judge which the ban can be temporary along with also also “can be a reasonable along with also also appropriate way for agency heads to tackle gaps” inside screening process.
The lawsuits coming from the two groups were consolidated along with also also represent refugees who have been blocked coming from entering the country.
The ACLU represents a Somali man living in Washington state who can be trying to bring his family to the U.S. They have gone through extensive vetting, have passed security along with also also medical clearances, along with also also just need travel papers, although those were denied after the ban.
Lisa Nowlin, staff attorney for the ACLU of Washington, said in a statement they were happy for their client — “who has not yet had the opportunity to celebrate 1 birthday with his younger son in person — will soon develop the opportunity to hold his children, hug his wife inside very near future, along with also also be together again as a family for the very first time in four years.”
Two additional refugees included inside Jewish Family Service lawsuit are former Iraqi interpreters for the U.S. Army whose lives are at risk because of their service.
Another can be a transgender woman in Egypt “living in such extremely dangerous circumstances which the U.S. government itself had expedited her case until the ban came down,” said Mariko Hirose, a lawyer with the Jewish Family Service case.
Yet another can be 1 woman in Iraq, Hirose said. Her husband divorced her after she was kidnapped along with also also raped by militants because she worked with an American company. Her family can be inside U.S. although she’s stranded by the ban, Hirose said.