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US: Lower House set to vote on reversing President Donald Trump's 'Muslim ban'

News Agencies | Updated on: 22 July 2020, 14:04 IST
President Donald Trump

The lower house of the United States Congress, the House of Representatives is set to vote today (July 22) on a piece of legislation which reverses President Donald Trump's controversial order banning entry to immigrants from mostly Muslim-majority countries.

The bill which is called the No Ban Act has had a broad base of support among Democratic legislators and is likely to pass the Democrat-controlled House despite opposition from Republicans and the White House, Al Jazeera reported.

"There are today millions of Americans who, because of the Muslim ban, are separated from families and loved ones: parents who can't be reunited, families who can't be reunited, grandparents who are missing out on life events," said Farhana Khera, executive director of Muslim Advocates, a group concurring instance with the bill.

The bill expands 'anti-discriminatory provisions' in US immigration law. It is also set to limit the ability of US presidents in the future to bar entry based on religion. The bill, if passed, will terminate Trump's executive orders which imposes a ban on immigration from some specific countries.

The president's initial ban targeted Libya, Iran, Syria, Somalia, and Yemen. This had triggered criticism that it amounted to 'unlawful religious discrimination'. Trump had then expanded the ban to include Venezuela and North Korea.

He later added Nigeria, Sudan and Myanmar to the list. In the debate scheduled to be held on Wednesday (July 22), Democrats plan to share stories from dozens of their American constituents who have seen family members prevented from entering the US for 'arbitrary reasons' under the ban.

However, the legislation is unlikely to be allowed to be passed in the Republican-led upper house of the Congress, the Senate. This means that the prospects for its passage this year are dim. The US Supreme Court, in 2017, had ruled that the president has the authority to impose the ban under existing US immigration law.


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First published: 22 July 2020, 14:04 IST