The seven-page document calls for an immediate suspension of immigration from countries with ties to terror, including Syria, Yemen, Sudan, Somalia, Iraq, Iran and Libya, for a time period of 90 days. It also calls for the complete suspension of Syrian refugees for an indefinite period.
In both cases, the executive order says admissions from these regions are “detrimental to the United States.”
The order also calls on the secretary of state to suspend the entire Refugee Admissions Program (meaning all countries) for 120 days while authorities review the application and adjudication process.
President Trump signed the order, called “Protecting the Nation From Foreign Terrorist Entry Into the United States,” Friday afternoon after an official swearing-in ceremony for his new secretary of defense, James Mattis.
The order also calls for limiting the overall number of refugees admitted to the U.S. to 50,000 people in 2017. Last fiscal year, the Obama White House admitted close to 85,000 refugees, over 12,500 of them from Syria.
In addition, the order also calls for prioritizing refugee entry on the basis of “religious-based persecution” so long as the religion is a minority in the country of the person seeking refuge. That language appears to be directed in part at Syrian Christians, a group Trump has singled out as a priority. To that effect, the order says that exceptions to the immigration and refugee policies outlined in the document can be made on a case-by-case basis.