Update: The US Embassy in Tel Aviv has clarified
that President Donald Trump’s travel ban will largely not affect the
tens of thousands of Israeli Jews born in Middle Eastern countries. (Most fled persecution and are over 65).
A statement today said the controversial executive order would not be
enforced against Israelis from those countries unless they possess a
valid passport from one of the seven Arab countries banned under the
See Times of Israel report.
The 90-day immigration ban from seven Muslim countries has already been having an effect on Jews born in those countries, although President Trump has said that Christian refugees will be given priority for entry to the US and Green Cardholders will no longer be affected. Here is an unintended consequence of the ban – on a programme originally established in Austria to help refugees from religious persecution in Iran. NBC New York reports: (with thanks: Michelle)
President Trump in the Oval Office
Austria has shut its door to about
300 non-Muslim Iranians hoping to use the country as a way station
before establishing new homes in the United States, The Associated Press
has learned. The action is an early ripple effect of U.S. President
Donald Trump’s effort to clamp down on refugee admissions.
a 27-year-old program originally approved by Congress to help Jews in
the former Soviet Union, Austria had been serving until recently as a
conduit for Iranian Jews, Christians and Baha’i, who were at risk in
their home country and eligible to resettle in the United States. Iran
has banned the Baha’i religion, which was founded in 1844 by a Persian
nobleman considered a prophet by followers.
officials had been interviewing the candidates in Austria because they
cannot do so in Iran. But the United States suspended the so-called
“Iranian Lautenberg Program” in recent days, according to Austrian
officials, who in turn stopped Iranians from reaching their territory.
It’s unclear when the program might restart.