President Donald Trump’s revised travel ban came into force last night imposing tougher US entry rules on people from six mainly Muslim countries and all refugees.
Travellers without close family or business relationships in the US could be denied visas and barred entry, under the new regulations.
Grandparents, aunts, uncles, nephews and nieces are not considered to be “bona fide” relations.
The rules apply to people from Iran, Libya, Syria, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen, as well as all refugees.
However, it emerged that the state of Hawaii had asked a federal judge for clarification moments before the ban came into force at 8pm Washington time.
The island state has previously accused the US government of violating the Supreme Court’s instructions by improperly excluding people.
The Supreme Court partially upheld the ban earlier this week, lifting injunctions that had halted one of Trump’s key policies.
The court ruled that people seeking visas to travel to the US from the six restricted countries, and all refugees, would have to prove a “bona fide relationship” to someone in the country.
The Supreme Court is expected to make a final decision on the ban in October.
An official with the Department of Homeland Security told thre BBC it expected “business as usual at ports of entry”, adding: “Our people are well prepared for this.”
Immigration rights activists and lawyers said they would be at hand at major US airports ready to help arrivals and ensure those with valid visas were allowed in.
Those from the six countries without a close relationship will not be able to enter the US for the next 90 days, according to the new rules.
People who already hold valid visas are not affected. Dual nationals who travel on their passport from an unaffected country will also be allowed entry.
The court also approved a 120-day ban on refugees entering the US, allowing the government to bar entry to refugee claimants who cannot prove the same ties to an American individual or entity.
The original ban, imposed on January 27, provoked mass protests and chaos at US airports.
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