This Article is From Feb 01, 2017

White House Hints At Including Pakistan In Donald Trump's Travel Ban List

White House Hints At Including Pakistan In Donald Trump's Travel Ban List

Pakistan could be included in US President Donald Trump's travel ban list, White House said.

Washington: The White House today hinted that Pakistan could be included in US President Donald Trump's travel ban list. Trump recently signed an executive order that imposed a temporary ban on the arrival of citizens from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Syria and Yemen.

"Maybe we will. The bottom line is we started with the seven countries that have previously been identified, did a 90-day review. Maybe during that 90-day review we find other countries or we take someone off or whatever. But it is a review process," White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer replied to a question when asked why the list does not include Pakistan. 

Spicer's comment came a day after White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus also hinted on Pakistan being included into the controversial immigration ban list.

The seven Muslim majority nations affected by the immigration ban are Syria, Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Yemen and Libya.

"Those were the seven countries that both, Congress and the Obama Administration, identified as being the seven countries that were most identifiable with dangerous terrorism taking place in their country," Mr Priebus said, in an interview, to CBS News.

"Now you can point to other countries that have similar problems, like Pakistan and others. Perhaps, we need to take it further. But for now, immediate steps, pulling the band-aid off, is to do further vetting for people travelling in and out of those countries," the White House official added.

Trump has insisted that his executive order was "not a Muslim ban". Trump's reaction comes after the travel ban - that bans entry of even green-card holders from the seven countries - met with global outrage and huge protests across the United States. 

Washington state's attorney general has also sued Donald Trump over the executive order. Attorney General Bob Ferguson announced his lawsuit against the order, becoming the first state attorney general to announce a legal action against the Trump administration over one of its policies.

The Administration has however shown no signs of backing down and the US Department of Homeland Security has said that it would continue to enforce the order but comply with the court's order.

"Our number one priority as a government and as leaders is to protect the 324 million people who live in this country. So I understand that people may be inconvenienced a little coming into the nation. But this is our nation, our country. Our first and foremost responsibility is to our people," Spicer said in response to the question at George Washington University.

"If people want to come to this country and visit or travel or study, then we welcome them. We've always been a welcoming country. But the idea that we should just have an open door and let people in willy-nilly is ridiculous," he said.