TEHRAN, Young Journalists Club (YJC) - Maryland federal judge Theodore Chuang said Wednesday the travel ban of citizens from six majority-Muslim countries and North Korea, and on many officials from Venezuela, essentially had not changed from the first two versions, which were also blocked in lower courts for discriminating against a single religion.
He cited various statements made by Trump, including his 2015 call for a “total and complete shutdown on Muslims entering the United States.”
"To the extent that the Government might have provided additional evidence to establish that national security is now the primary purpose for the travel ban, it has not done so," Chuang wrote. "
On Tuesday, Federal District Court Judge Derrick Watson for the District of Hawaii issued a nationwide order blocking the third version of Trump’s controversial travel ban, calling it discriminatory and in breach of immigration law.
Chuang wrote that the president’s public statements “not only fail to advance, but instead undermine, the position that the primary purpose of the travel ban now derives from the need to address information sharing deficiencies.”
Together, the pair of rulings are a prelude to a battle over the president’s executive authority that is expected to wind up again before the US Supreme Court.
Trump has issued three travel bans since coming to office in January. His third ban was announced September 24 and takes effect October 18.
Trump issued the new order to replace an expiring 90-day temporary ban on travelers from the Muslim-majority nations of Iran, Syria, Sudan, Yemen, Somalia and Libya.
The new ban removes Sudan from the list of affected countries and adds Chad and North Korea, along with several officials from the government of Venezuela. Iraq, which was included in the first travel ban, was removed from the list in the revised second ban, Presstv reported.
In June, the US Supreme Court granted the Trump administration’s request to reinstate parts of the second travel ban, after months of legal battle between the government and some states in federal courts.