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New US travel ban to spare green card holders, secretary for homeland security says

A new version of a Trump administration travel ban will not stop green card residency holders or travellers already on planes from entering the United States, US Secretary for Homeland Security John Kelly said on Saturday.

US President Donald Trump’s initial attempt to clamp down for security reasons on immigration from seven Muslim-majority countries and on refugees snarled to a halt amid a judicial backlash and chaos at airports.

“The president is contemplating releasing a tighter, more streamlined version of the first (order). And I will have opportunity to work (on) a rollout plan, in particular to make sure that there’s no one in a sense caught in the system of moving from overseas to our airports,” Kelly said at the Munich Security Conference.

Asked whether green card residency permit holders would be allowed in, Kelly said: “It’s a good assumption and, as far as the visas go, … if they’re in motion from some distant land to the United States, when they arrive they will be allowed in.”

He promised “a short phase-in period to make sure that people on the other end don’t get on airplanes. But if they’re on an airplane and inbound, they’ll be allowed to enter the country.”

A draft of the replacement executive order shows that the administration aims to put restrictions on citizens of the same seven Muslim-majority countries covered by the initial order, according to the Wall Street Journal, which cites an internal State Department memo.

The replacement order could be issued as early as Tuesday, the Journal reported, citing a US government official.

The administration would seek to implement the new order a week to two weeks after it is signed, and covers citizens from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen, the Journal said.

Meanwhile….

Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders hit out at US President Donald Trump for his frequent attacks on the news media, calling the President a “pathological liar”, the media reported.

“In Trump’s view, people should ignore all the news except what comes directly from him. That is what totalitarianism is all about. Good thing we have Donald Trump, a pathological liar, to tell us the ‘truth’,” Sanders said on Saturday in a series of tweets.

Sanders joined the presidential race last year as a Democratic hopeful.

Sanders’ message appeared to be in response to tweets by Donald Trump on Friday night that called news outlets “the enemy of the American people”, The Hill magazine reported.

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