A federal court has granted an emergency stay blocking the deportation of migrants detained at airports around the United States due to Donald Trump’s immigration ban.
The federal court for the Eastern District of New York issued the stay Saturday evening after only two of 12 refugees held at JFK airport were released, after 14 and 24 hours respectively. The ACLU had filed a petition on their behalf, but the stay is effective nationwide. Under the stay, none of the travelers held at airports across the nation can be sent back. However, the measure doesn’t mean they have to be allowed into the country – leaving them in a grey area.
Earlier on Saturday, Donald Trump defended his new immigration measures, which prompted outrage as migrants were barred from entering the United States, including families of refugees and Ivy League students.
The president denied that his executive order, which bars refugees and citizens of seven predominantly Muslim countries from entering the US, was a Muslim ban.
He maintained that the ban was ‘working very nicely’ while chaos broke out in airports as migrants were stopped and some non-American citizens realized they were now barred from the country where they were studying or had lived, perhaps for years.
Trump’s comments came as migrants around the country were detained in airports because they arrived just after the executive order was signed.
A senior Homeland Security official told Reuters that roughly 375 travelers affected by the order. Out of the 375, 109 were in transit to the US and denied entry. Another 173 people were stopped by airlines from boarding an aircraft to the US. An additional 81 travelers with green cards or special immigrant visas received waivers.
Scroll down for video
President Donald Trump on Saturday defended his executive order barring refugees and citizens of seven predominantly Muslim countries from entering the country
Trump (pictured speaking with Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull Saturday) made several phone calls with world leaders from Japan, Germany, Russia and France while the crisis unfolded
A crowd of protesters gathered on Brooklyn’s Cadman Plaza Saturday night, outside of the federal court for the Eastern District of New York that issued the stay
Protesters rallied in Brooklyn outside of the federal courthouse, which blocked Trump’s order temporarily Saturday evening
Demonstrators rallied outside the courthouse Saturday night as a judge granted the emergency stay protecting the detained travelers from deportation
‘No ban’: Demonstrators at the massive rally in Brooklyn voiced their disagreement with Trump’s executive order
The federal court for the Eastern District of New York issued an emergency stay (pictured) Saturday evening. The stay means that none of the travelers detained in airports around the country can be deported
‘It’s not a Muslim ban, but we are totally prepared,’ Trump told reporters in the Oval Office Saturday afternoon, according to The Hill.
‘It’s working out very nicely. You see it in the airports, you see it all over. It’s working out very nicely and we are going to have a very, very strict ban and we are going to have extreme vetting, which we should have had in this country for many years.’
WHAT IS THE EMERGENCY STAY?
The emergency stay issued Saturday evening by a federal court is a temporary measure that preserves the status quo pending a permanent ruling.
It means that none of the travelers currently held at airports across the nation can be deported back to their countries.
That is because Judge Ann Donnelly ruled that doing so would cause the travelers irreparable harm.
The stay does not, however, mean that the travelers have to be let into the United States.
It is unclear what will happen to those detained.
The stay is not a ruling on Donald Trump’s executive order enforcing the immigration ban.
Lawyers had filed a petition on behalf of two out of 12 refugees detained at JFK airport.
The men, two Iraqi nationals, had valid visas. One of them had worked for the US government for years.
ACLU attorneys had filed a petition on their behalf, but the stay is effective nationwide.
The lawyers who handled the case have also filed for class certification, which means other people affected by the order will be able to benefit from the stay as part of a class action.
The stay issued Saturday evening blocks the situation pending a permanent ruling. The ACLU lawyers who handled the case have also filed a motion for class certification, which means other people affected by the order will be able to benefit from the stay as part of a class action.
Judge Donnelly also ordered the government to give a list of people detained due to Trump’s order.
The measure means detained travelers cannot be deported back to their home countries, but it does not force authorities to allow them into the US. Judge Ann Donnelly ruled that sending them back would expose them to irreparable harm.
Trump’s ban affects citizens from Iraq, Syria, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia and Yemen. The temporary stay also protects refugees with an approved case.
It is unclear what will happen to those detained. A later court date has been set for February.
It was reported shortly after the stay was issued that it wasn’t being implemented in several airports.
‘We have gotten disturbing reports that @CustomBorders is refusing to comply with the court order,’ ACLU deputy legal director Cecilia Wang tweeted. She said she had heard reports that officials were refusing to pull people from planes sending them back.
A PhD student detained at JFK was being deported back to Istanbul despite the stay, BBC Persian correspondent Bahman Kalbasi said on Twitter.
The Department of Homeland Security said early on Sunday it would comply with judicial orders not to send back detained travelers.
It said it would ‘comply with judicial orders; faithfully enforce our immigration laws, and implement President Trump’s Executive Orders to ensure that those entering the United States do not pose a threat to our country or the American people’.
Crowds of demonstrators who had gathered at airports and outside the Brooklyn courthouse let out cheers when news of the temporary stay broke.
‘I hope Trump enjoys losing. He’s going to lose so much we’re going to get sick and tired of his losing,’ ACLU national political director Faiz Shakir told Yahoo News.
The ACLU was getting ready to help between 100 and 200 people.
‘This ruling preserves the status quo and ensures that people who have been granted permission to be in this country are not illegally removed off US soil, deputy director of the ACLU’s Immigrants’ Rights Project Lee Gelernt, who argued the case, said.
ACLU Executive Director Anthony D Romero added: ‘Clearly the judge understood the possibility for irreparable harm to hundreds of immigrants and lawful visitors to this country.
‘Our courts today worked as they should as bulwarks against government abuse or unconstitutional policies and orders. On week one, Donald Trump suffered his first loss in court.’
The National Border Patrol Council, which represents about 18,000 border patrol staffers, previously backed Trump’s measures.
‘We fully support and appreciate President Trump’s swift and decisive action to keep the American people safe and allow law enforcement to do its job,’ the council said in a statement.
‘We applaud the three executive orders he has issued to date, and are confident they will make America safer and more prosperous. Morale amongst our agents and officers has increased exponentially since the signing of the orders. The men and women of ICE and Border Patrol will work tirelessly to keep criminals, terrorists, and public safety threats out of this country, which remains the number one target in the world – and President Trump’s actions now empower us to fulfill this life saving mission, and it will indeed save thousands of lives and billions of dollars.’
Two associate professors at the University Of Massachusetts Dartmouth told the Boston Globe early Sunday they had filed a federal lawsuit against Trump. The professors, who are both Iran citizens and Muslims, say they were held unlawfully at Logan International Airport.
Panic previously broke out after Department of Homeland Security issued a directive at 4:30 pm on Friday enforcing Trump’s executive order to close down the borders to refugees and visa holders from a list of banned Muslim-majority countries.
Trump’s order singled out Syrians by indefinitely blocking entry for anyone from that country, including those fleeing civil war.
The measure did not address the case of homegrown extremists who are already in the US, a major concern for federal law enforcement.
Reports of people being detained came from all around the US on Saturday. ‘They’re literally pouring in by the minute,’ director of the International Refugee Assistance Project Becca Heller told the New York Times.
About 50 people were held at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport, USA Today reported. Fifty people were also detained at Dulles International Airport, where protesters gathered. Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe and Attorney General Mark Herring have said the state could take legal action against the ban.
One Yale student said he would be unable to attend the prestigious Ivy League university. Another student from the Massachusetts Institute Of Technology said he was barred from boarding a plane.
A Stanford University student, a Sudanese national and legal permanent resident with a green card, was held for eight hours at JFK before being able to return to California.
An Iranian scientist was meant to fly to Boston to study cardiovascular medicine at Harvard but has now had his visa suspended indefinitely.
‘This outstanding young scientist has enormous potential to make contributions that will improve our understanding of heart disease, and he has already been thoroughly vetted,’ Professor Thomas Michel, who was going to supervise the student, told The New York Times.
Up to 13 people were detained at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, KUOW reported. Eleven people were held at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported. Thirteen were detained at Chicago O’Hare according to the Chicago Tribune. At least 50 Iranians were held at Los Angeles International Airport, the LA Times wrote.
Mehdi Radgoudarzi (left) greeted his wife Susan (right) after being detained for five hours upon his arrival from Tehran, Iran at San Francisco’s SFO International Airport
Radgoudarzi (center) made his way through the arrival pick up area with his wife Susan (left) and daughter Niloofar (right) after being detained at San Francisco’s SFO International Airport as a result of Trump’s order
Niloofar (left) gave her father a hug while Radgoudarzi’s wife (right) also greeted him at San Francisco International Airport
Mazdak Tootkaboni is pictured being embraced during a demonstration at Logan International Airport in Boston, Massachusetts. Tootkaboni is a US green card holder from Iran and a professor at the University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth, but he was still separated from other passengers and questioned
A female veteran held a sign reading ‘We thought we were helping, sorry’ at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport
Yolanda Roa, a Latina Muslim, joined the protest to denounce Trump’s executive order at Dallas-Fort Worth International
Demonstrators gathered in the international arrivals area at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport to protest on Saturday
Philadelphia mayor Jim Kenney (middle) alongside Councilwoman Helen Gym (left) and Representative Bob Brady, addresses a crowd of protestors inside the Philadelphia International Airport
The massive demonstration carried on through Saturday evening as 10 out of 12 refugees remained held at JFK airport
Police stopped a man giving pizza to protesters who were chanting slogans outside Terminal 4 at JFK airport in New York City
The protest followed Trump’s executive order barring refugees and citizens from seven countries from entering the US
Port Authority Police Department blocked an entrance as protesters gathered outside Terminal 4 at JFK airport
A sea of protesters gathered outside of Terminal 4 of JFK after people from Muslim countries were detained at border control
ACLU’S FULL STATEMENT ON THE EMERGENCY STAY
A federal judge tonight granted the American Civil Liberties Union’s request for a nationwide temporary injunction that will block the deportation of all people stranded in US airports under President Trump’s new Muslim ban.
The ACLU and other legal organizations filed a lawsuit on behalf of individuals subject to President Trump’s Muslim ban. The lead plaintiffs have been detained by the US government and threatened with deportation even though they have valid visas to enter the United States.
Lee Gelernt, deputy director of the ACLU’s Immigrants’ Rights Project who argued the case, said:
‘This ruling preserves the status quo and ensures that people who have been granted permission to be in this country are not illegally removed off US soil.’
ACLU Executive Director Anthony D Romero, had this reaction to the ruling:
‘Clearly the judge understood the possibility for irreparable harm to hundreds of immigrants and lawful visitors to this country. Our courts today worked as they should as bulwarks against government abuse or unconstitutional policies and orders. On week one, Donald Trump suffered his first loss in court.’
Protesters held a massive rally at New York City’s JFK airport Saturday after 12 refugees were detained due to the ban
The protest at John F Kennedy International Airport carried on through Saturday as 11 out of 12 people remained detained
‘This is illegal’: Demonstrators gathered outside JFK Saturday for a long protest after 12 refugees were detained inside
J’accuse: One protester held a sign reading: ‘Trump is the terrorist’ while another proclaimed: ‘This is not how to defeat ISIS!’
One of the JFK protesters demanded more protection for immigrant families, as some were detained around the US
Demonstrators poured into JFK airport all throughout Saturday to express their disagreement with Trump’s order
Travelers reported that police stopped allowing people without plane tickets onto the Air Train, which goes to the airport terminals, during the evening (the boarding area to the train is pictured)
Police at one point blocked protesters from accessing the Air Train at JFK but Governor Andrew Cuomo later ordered authorities to let them through
Cuomo said that ‘one of the fundamental rights that is granted to the people of this country is the right to peacefully protest’ as he ordered police to let demonstrators access the Air Train again
Hundreds gathered at Chicago O’Hare airport Saturday to speak out against Trump’s ban on immigration Saturday
‘Muslims are welcome’: One Chicago protester insisted that all should be able to come to the US regardless of their religion
Hundreds of protesters arrived at Chicago O’Hare airport to protest against Trump’s executive order on Saturday
Protestors rallied at a demonstration against the new ban on immigration issued by Trump at Logan International Airport in Boston, Massachusetts
More than 1,000 people gathered at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport to protest Trump’s order that restricts immigration
Protesters gathered at the international arrivals area of Dulles International Airport, where 50 people were detained
‘America wants you here!’ Protesters sent a clear message to all visitors arriving at Washington Dulles International Airport
While a protest unfolded at Dulles International airport, Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe and Attorney General Mark Herring have said the state could take legal action against the ban
Demonstrators also gathered in San Francisco International Airport Saturday to protest against the ban on immigration
‘No ban, no wall’: One demonstrator spoke out against two of Trump’s major campaign promises at the San Francisco rally
Kayla Razavi, whose family emigrated from Iran, addressed the crowd during the San Francisco protest Saturday afternoon
Demonstrators hold signs reading ‘Home of the free’ during the rally against the ban on immigration in San Francisco
Demonstrators rallied at the Minneapolis-St Paul International Airport Saturday afternoon to protest against Trump’s ban
James Badue, who is with the Minnesota NAACP, led other opponents in a chant: ‘No hate, no fear, immigrants are welcome here,’ as an airport police officer tried to quiet him at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport
Travelers arriving to at the international gate of the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport were greeted by protesters demonstrating against the executive order signed by President Trump
Hillary Clinton tweeted on Saturday evening that she supported those who had chosen to speak out against the ban
Cab drivers at New York City’s JFK airport went on strike for an hour from 6 pm to 7 pm Saturday to protest against the ban
HOW MANY PEOPLE ARE BEING DETAINED?
A senior Homeland Security official told Reuters that roughly 375 travelers affected by the order.
Out of the 375, 109 were in transit to the US and denied entry. Another 173 people were stopped by airlines from boarding an aircraft to the US.
An additional 81 travelers with green cards or special immigrant visas received waivers.
The ACLU gave an estimate comprised between 100 and 200 people.
New York City/JFK: 12
Dallas/Fort Worth: 50
Dulles International: 50
Los Angeles International: 50
Two families of six from Syria were affected. One was supposed to relocate to Cleveland, Ohio, after having to flee their home in 2014. But their trip was canceled.
Another family of six from the war-torn country was detained at Philadelphia International Airport Saturday morning even though they had required legal documents and approved green cards and visas.
Plane passengers were turned away in Dubai and Istanbul, including at least one family who got ejected from a flight.
The fallout from Trump’s immigration crackdown grew on Saturday.
The visa ban sparked fear for some refugees who were already on their way to the US when the order came into effect and were detained on arrival.
Twelve refugees were held in New York City’s JFK on Friday night. Cabs at the airport went on strike for an hour from 6 pm to 7 pm to protest against the ban.
Travelers reported that police stopped allowing people without plane tickets onto the Air Train, which goes to the airport terminals, during the evening.
Governor Andrew Cuomo, however, ordered authorities to let protesters onto the Air Train, saying in a statement relayed by ABC that ‘one of the fundamental rights that is granted to the people of this country is the right to peacefully protest’.
Protesters also demonstrated at Dallas Forth Worth Airport Saturday afternoon as the immigration ban created chaos
‘He will not divide us’: One demonstrator made a plea for unity at Dallas Fort Worth Airport while protesting with his brother
One demonstrator at LAX re-purposed Hillary Clinton’s supporters’ motto, this time applying it to the Statue Of Liberty
People held signs with the names of people detained and denied entry at Los Angeles International Airport on Saturday
Sarah Saedian is pictured speaking with an attorney about her Iranian relatives as lawyers work to help family members of passengers affected by the travel ban at Los Angeles International Airport
Homa Homaei, a US Citizen from Iran, is pictured receiving a hug from a lawyer working to help her Iranian family members effected by the travel ban at Los Angeles International Airport
Volunteer lawyers are pictured working pro-bono Saturday in New York preparing petitions for detainees at JFK
Hameed Khalid Darweesh, one of the Iraqi refugees, was detained for 14 hours in New York and released on Saturday afternoon. The second detainee, Haider Sameer Abdulkhaleq Alshawi, was released around 7 pm on Saturday after 24 hours.
Darweesh, 53, had arrived in America on a flight from Istanbul on Friday night, just hours after Trump implemented the immigration ban.
He had worked for the US government in Iraq for 10 years as a translator, engineer and contractor and had a valid special immigration visa to relocate to America.
Alshawi, 33 – who was approved for a visa on January 11 – was flying to America to join his wife and son in Texas. ‘I’m sleepy and tired and exhausted,’ he told the New York Post after being released Saturday.
Darweesh pumped his fist in the air outside the airport following his release, as a crowd of supporters cheered him on.
‘First of all I want to thank the people that take care of me and support me. This is the humility, this is the soul of America,’ he told a crowd gathered outside the airport.
‘This is what pushed me to move – leave my country and come here. America is the land of freedom… America is the greatest nation, the greatest people in the world.’
Asked what he thought of Trump he said: ‘I don’t know. He’s a president, I’m a normal person.’
He was travelling with his wife and three children at the time but they were not detained. They were heading to Charlotte, North Carolina to start their new life in America.
Protesters assemble at JFK airport on Saturday to protest Trump’s arriving refugee ban
Protesters gathered outside New York JFK’s airport on Saturday after 12 refugees were detained trying to enter the United States under Trump’s immigration ban
Lawyers for Darweesh and another Iraqi Haider Sameer Abdulkhaleq Alshawi, who is still detained at JFK, filed a lawsuit on Saturday morning in a bid to have them released.
The two men were on separate flights when immigration officials stopped them on Friday night and took their passports when they landed in New York.
WHO EXACTLY IS BANNED FROM THE U.S?
Any non-U.S. citizen from Iraq, Syria, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia or Yemen is now barred from entering the United States.
That covers legal permanent residents – green card holders – and visa-holders from those seven countries who were out of the United States after Friday, when President Donald Trump signed an executive order with the temporary ban. They cannot return to the U.S. for 90 days.
There’s an exemption for immigrants and legal permanent residents whose entry is in the U.S. national interest, but it’s unclear how that exemption will be applied.
Visa and green card holders already in the U.S. will be allowed to stay.
Customs and Border Protection is notifying airlines about passengers whose visas have been canceled or legal residents scheduled to fly back to the U.S. Airlines are being told to keep them off those flights.
Source: Associated Press
Ten other refugees were still being held at JFK airport.
Republican lawmakers have spoken out against Trump’s immigration ban. Senator Chris Murphy tweeted: ‘To my colleagues: don’t ever again lecture me on American moral leadership if you chose to be silent today.’ He later called the emergency stay a temporary victory.
Representative Charlie Dent also spoke out against Trump’s order.
‘This is ridiculous,’ he told the Washington Post. ‘I guess I understand what his intention is, but unfortunately the order appears to have been rushed through without full consideration. You know, there are many, many nuances of immigration policy that can be life or death for many innocent, vulnerable people around the world.’
Representative Justin Amash questioned whether the measure was legal.
‘It’s not lawful to ban immigrants on basis of nationality,’ he tweeted. ‘If the president wants to change immigration law, he must work with Congress.’
Senator Ben Sasse said that Trump was right to focus on border control, but said the president’s order was is ‘too broad’.
‘If we send a signal to the Middle East that the US sees all Muslims as jihadis, the terrorist recruiters win by telling kids that America is banning Muslims and that this is America versus one religion,’ he said. ‘Our generational fight against jihadism requires wisdom.’
Earlier on Saturday, Cairo airport officials said seven US-bound migrants – six from Iraq and one from Yemen – were prevented from boarding an EgyptAir flight to New York’s JFK airport.
The officials said the seven migrants, escorted by officials from the UN refugee agency, were stopped from boarding the plane on Saturday after authorities at Cairo airport contacted their counterparts in JFK airport.
The action at Cairo airport was the first there since Trump imposed the three-month ban on refugees.
Dutch airline KLM says it had to turn away seven would-be passengers because they would no longer have been accepted into the United States.
‘We would love to bring them there. That’s not the problem. It’s just that this is what the U.S. sprang on the rest of the world – that these people are no longer welcome,’ Manel Vrijenhoek, at KLM’s press office, said.
She said the seven, who were from the seven blacklisted countries, were due to fly with KLM from different airports around the world.
In Tehran, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif said Iran would stop issuing new visas to US citizens in response to Trump’s ban, but that anyone already with a visa to Iran wouldn’t be turned away.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau took to Twitter Saturday afternoon to say that refugees were welcome in Canada, ‘regardless of your faith’.
The Arab-American Anti-Discrimination Committee said there was chaos at airports and in the air following Trump’s ban with the organization already receiving calls for help from green card and other visa holders after being refused admission.
‘Visas being denied immediately. Chaos at airports and in the air. #MuslimBan will apply to green card holders attempting to return tonight,’ the ADC’s Abed Ayoub tweeted on Friday night.
Trump’s ban puts a 90-day pause on visas and immigration from seven countries including Iraq, Syria, Sudan, Iran, Libya, Yemen and Somalia.
The order also puts a 120-day ban on all refugee entries into the country and declares that refugees from Syria are not welcome until further notice.
After that period of time, refugees will be accepted only from countries that the State and Homeland Security Departments decide are safe to work with.
Hameed Khalid Darweesh, who had worked as a interpreter with the U.S. Army in Iraq, was released from detention on Saturday. He was detained after flying into New York on Friday night
Iran’s foreign ministry suggested the country would limit issuing visas to American tourists in retaliation for Trump’s suspension of immigration and visas.
WHAT IS TRUMP’S IMMIGRATION ORDER SUPPOSED TO DO?
Ban refugee entries from all countries for 120 days. Refugees can be accepted on case-by-case basis, including if they are a religious minority facing religious persecution
Block refugee entries from Syria indefinitely.
Cap refugee intake at 50,000 per year.
Ban visa and immigration entries for 90 days from Muslim-majority countries on banned list, including Iraq, Syria, Sudan, Iran, Libya, Yemen and Somalia.
Suspend visa issuance to countries of particular concern.
The official IRNA news agency carried a statement by the Iranian foreign ministry on Saturday that said Iran will resort to ‘counteraction’ to Trump’s executive order.
‘Iran, to defend the dignity of the great Iranian nation, will implement the principle of reciprocity until the removal of the insulting restriction against Iranian nationals,’ the statement read.
‘It will apply corresponding legal, consular and political actions.’
The two countries have had no diplomatic relations since 1979 when militants stormed the U.S. embassy.
Google urged its staff travelling overseas on Friday to immediately return to the U.S. if they would be affected by the order.
CEO Sundar Pichai issued a memo slamming Trump’s order saying 100 employees were affected, Bloomberg reports.
The tech company feared its employees, even though they have valid visas, would be stopped from returning to the country.
Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg hit out at Trump condemning his anti-immigration bans.
‘The United States is a nation of immigrants, and we should be proud of that,’ Zuckerberg said.
Emotional: Muslim travelers were nervous as they arrived in JFK today as chaos was apparent over the enforcement of Trump’s immigration executive order
Permitted: Tourists were permitted from Dubai which is not a country on Trump’s anti-terror list
It follows reports that Muslim-majority countries with ties to Trump’s business empire have been excluded from the order
Google CEO Sundar Pichai urged its staff travelling overseas on Friday to immediately return to the US if they would be affected. Mark Zuckerberg also penned a post opposing the ban
It follows reports that Muslim-majority countries with ties to Trump’s business empire have been excluded from the order, Bloomberg reports.
Statistics show Trump doesn’t have any business relations with the seven black-listed countries, but does with Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Turkey.
Trump’s order declares that US policy is ‘to protect its citizens from foreign nationals who intend to commit terrorist attacks in the United States; and to prevent the admission of foreign nationals who intend to exploit United States immigration laws for malevolent purposes.’
It also gives Homeland Security 60 days to begin providing the president with the names of other countries to add to the list.
The nation will limit the total refugee resettlement numbers to 50,000 per year, according to the order.
Trump’s executive order declares that the U.S. will ‘prioritize refugee claims made by individuals on the basis of religious-based persecution.’ But that only applies when ‘the religion of the individual is a minority religion in the individual’s country of nationality.’
Award-winning Iranian director Asghar Farhadi, who is nominated for an Oscar for his film The Salesman, won’t be able to attend after Donald Trump introduced tough new immigration bans
Trita Parsi, president of the National Iranian American Council, tweeted on Saturday morning that Farhadi would be banned
The Iranian star of Oscar-nominated film The Salesman, Taraneh Alidoosti, has already said she is boycotting the Oscars in protest at President Donald Trump’s ‘racist’ ban on Muslim immigrants
Also affected by the order is an Oscar-nominated Iranian director, who won’t be able to attend the Hollywood award ceremony due to the new immigration bans.
Asghar Farhadi is nominated in the best foreign film category for his movie The Salesman but there are fears he may now not be able to attend next month’s Academy Awards.
His native Iran, which is where The Salesman was filmed, is one of seven countries listed in Trump’s executive order that has placed a 90-day pause on visas and immigration to the US.
Trita Parsi, president of the National Iranian American Council, tweeted on Saturday morning that Farhadi would be banned from attending the Oscars in what has become yet another fallout from Trump’s immigration bans.
‘Iran’s Asghar Farhadi won’t be let into the US to attend Oscar’s. He’s nominated for best foreign language film… #MuslimBan,’ he wrote.
An Iranian-born actress who stars in Farhadi’s The Salesman vowed to boycott the Oscars over Trump’s immigration bans.
Taraneh Alidoosti, the 33-year-old known as the Natalie Portman of Iran, took to Twitter with a message for fans on Thursday.
‘Trump’s visa ban for Iranians is racist. Whether this will include a cultural event or not, I won’t attend the #AcademyAwards 2017 in protest,’ she tweeted.
Farhadi won an Oscar in 2012 for his film A Separation. The Academy of Motion Pictures, Arts and Sciences has backed the director.
‘The Academy celebrates achievement in the art of filmmaking, which seeks to transcend borders and speak to audiences around the world, regardless of national, ethnic, or religious differences,’ it told EW in a statement.
‘As supporters of filmmakers—and the human rights of all people—around the globe, we find it extremely troubling that Asghar Farhadi, the director of the Oscar-winning film from Iran A Separation, along with the cast and crew of this year’s Oscar-nominated film The Salesman, could be barred from entering the country because of their religion or country of origin.’