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Chad Government Pushes Back on US Travel Ban

Chad Government Pushes Back on US Travel Ban

September 25, 2017 01:17 PM

WASHINGTON (AP) - The Latest on President Donald Trump's travel ban (all times local):
    
12:25 p.m.
    
Chad's government says it learned "with astonishment" of the decision by the U.S. government that its country is on a list whose nationals will be prohibited from entering the United States.
    
A government statement Monday said the government expresses its incomprehension about the "official reasons for this decision; which contrasts with Chad's constant efforts and commitments in the fight against terrorism at regional and global levels."
    
Chad's government called for a better appreciation of the situation and for Trump to reconsider the decision which it says "undermines the image of Chad and the good relations between the two countries."
    
It said it was open to discussions on strengthening collaborations with the U.S.
    
Chad is the headquarters for a multinational force set up to fight Nigeria-based Boko Haram Islamic extremists. -- AP reporter Dany Padire in N'Djamena, Chad.
    
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11:20 a.m.
    
Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro (nee-koh-LAHS' mah-DOO'-roh) says the Trump administration's decision to include Venezuelan officials on a travel ban is a form of "political and psychological terrorism."
    
His foreign ministry issued a statement Monday saying that the travel restrictions violate the values of the United Nations charter and international law and are part of a continuing effort by the U.S. to oust Maduro from power.
    
The ministry said it is considering "all necessary measures" to defend Venezuela's sovereignty and national interest.
    
The Trump administration says Venezuela's government has been uncooperative in verifying whether its citizens represent national security threats and says the travel restrictions target officials at agencies and ministries responsible for screening.
    
The Trump administration also calls for Venezuelan nationals who are already visa holders to be subject to "appropriate additional measures" to ensure their traveler information remains current.
    
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4:30 a.m.
    
The three major long-haul airlines of the Gulf say they are aware of the new travel restrictions implemented by U.S. President Donald Trump's administration.
    
Dubai-based Emirates said in a statement to The Associated Press: "With regards to entry requirements for travel to/from the USA, Emirates continues to take guidance provided to us by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection."
    
In Abu Dhabi, long-haul carrier Etihad said: "The airline continues to accept nationals with valid travel documentation from the listed countries. Acceptance, as per standard procedure, is subject to checks completed by U.S. authorities at the preclearance facility in Abu Dhabi International Airport."
    
Doha-based Qatar Airways also said its operations continued as normal.
    
The travel ban, as well as the since-lifted ban on laptops in Mideast airliner cabins, has hurt Gulf carriers. Emirates has cut routes to the U.S.
    
The Gulf airlines also have faced stiff resistance from U.S. airlines, which accuse the Mideast carriers of being unfairly subsidized by their governments. The Gulf carriers strongly dispute that.
    
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4:25 a.m.
    
In the streets of Tehran, Iranians say they are confused by the new travel ban instituted by U.S. President Donald Trump.
    
Roghieh Shahverdi, a 23-year-old secretary, told The Associated Press on Monday that she viewed it as "a miserable decision." She said after waiting months she only just got a visa interview appointment for her mother to visit her sister, who has lived in the U.S. for six years.
    
Shahverdi said: "All the hopes of both are fading away."
    
University student Erfan Maddah wrote online that he was "totally confused" by the decision.
    
Maddah wrote: "I have student visa appointment on October 4, I do not know if I have to continue or not."
    
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4:17 a.m.:
    
Iran's foreign minister has criticized U.S. President Donald Trump for his administration's new travel ban.
    
Mohammed Javad Zarif wrote on Twitter early Monday: "Trump's fake empathy for Iranians rings ever more hollow, with his new and even more offensive travel ban against such outstanding citizens."
    
Zarif, who is in New York for the United Nations General Assembly, has taken to Twitter before to criticize Trump.
    
Iran previously was among the six majority Muslim nations targeted in the travel ban.
    
The new travel ban applies indefinite restrictions to citizens of Chad, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria, Yemen and North Korea. The changes will take effect October 18.
    
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2:50 a.m.
    
North Korea hasn't reacted yet to newly announced U.S. travel restrictions, but they are largely a symbolic measure for the North Asian country already under severe sanctions because of its nuclear weapons program.
    
Most or all of the North Koreans living in the United States are based at the country's diplomatic mission to the United Nations.
    
The restrictions in the proclamation President Donald Trump signed Sunday include the suspension of all immigrant and non-immigrant visas for North Korean nationals.
    
South Korean analysts believe, though, the U.S. measure wouldn't target North Korean diplomats.
    
Certain North Korean individuals are banned already due to sanctions.
    
North Korea does not allow its ordinary citizens to travel abroad except in special cases, like jobs that bring in foreign currency or participation in sporting events.
    
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2:10 a.m.
    
President Donald Trump has signed a proclamation imposing strict new restrictions on travelers from a handful of countries, including five that were covered by his expiring travel ban. Administration officials say the new measures are required to keep the nation safe.
    
The indefinite restrictions apply to citizens of Chad, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria, Yemen and North Korea. As part of the presidential proclamation signed Sunday, the U.S. will also bar the entry of certain Venezuelan government officials and their immediate families.
    
The changes will take effect October 18.
    
The announcement came the same day that Trump's temporary ban on visitors from six Muslim-majority countries was set to expire, 90 days after it went into effect.
    
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Jon Gambrell in Dubai, United Arab Emirates and Nasser Karimi in Tehran contributed to this story

(Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
 

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