- Title: Muslim Americans rate Trumpâ€™s first 100 days
- Date: 26th April 2017
- Summary: ERBIL, IRAQ (JANUARY 29, 2017) (REUTERS) IRAQI KURDISH NATIONAL FUAD SULEMAN WALKING WITH FAMILY AT AIRPORT ARRIVAL HALL, PUSHING LUGGAGE SULEMAN AND HIS FAMILY MEETING AND HUGGING RELATIVES
- Embargoed: 10th May 2017 17:04
- Keywords: Muslims Trump travel ban Donald Trump executive order mosque banned countries
- Location: NEW YORK, NEW YORK; DULLES, VIENNA AND ARLINGTON, VIRGINIA; LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA; PATERSON, NEW JERSEY; MOUNT PLEASANT, SOUTH CAROLINA; WASHINGTON, D.C., UNITED STATES
- City: NEW YORK, NEW YORK; DULLES, VIENNA AND ARLINGTON, VIRGINIA; LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA; PATERSON, NEW JERSEY; MOUNT PLEASANT, SOUTH CAROLINA; WASHINGTON, D.C., UNITED STATES
- Country: USA
- Topics: Asylum/Immigration/Refugees,Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA0046E1BBK7
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: As U.S. President Donald Trump nears the end of his first three months in office, members of one of the largest Muslim American communities in the country reflected on the impact of the new administration in interviews with Reuters.
In the city of Paterson, New Jersey, about 20 miles (32 km) outside New York City, in Arabic advertise bakeries, general stores and tax preparers.
For many of the 25,000 congregants of the Islamic Center of Passaic County life has continued unhindered by the new administration, though a wary eye remains focused on events in Washington, D.C.
"A lot of people feel the current administration is not reflecting the American values that people fled countries to come and live under, so that being the general sentiment - a disappointment to the American values that everyone respects," explained Omar Awad, the center's president.
Long-standing good relations with local and regional government officials for the Muslim community in Paterson have helped to keep residents calm about Trump Awad said.
Trump proposed a temporary travel ban on Muslims during his presidential campaign last year, and said his original Jan. 27 executive order was a national security measure meant to head off attacks by Islamist militants.
It sparked chaos and protests at airports, where visa holders were detained and later deported back to their home countries. It also drew criticism from targeted countries, Western allies and some of America's leading corporations before a U.S. judge suspended it on Feb. 3.
Trump then signed a revised executive order banning citizens from six Muslim-majority nations from traveling to the United States but removing Iraq from the list, after his controversial first attempt was blocked in the courts.
The new order, which took effect on March 16, keeps a 90-day ban on travel to the United States by citizens of Iran, Libya, Syria, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen. It applies only to new visa applicants, meaning some 60,000 people whose visas were revoked under the previous order will now be permitted to enter.
Immigration advocates said the new ban still discriminated against Muslims and failed to address some of their concerns with the previous order.
Iraq was taken off the banned list because the Iraqi government has imposed new vetting procedures, such as heightened visa screening and data sharing, and because of its work with the United States in countering Islamic State militants.
Former Iraqi General Ismael al Sudani said the original order was received poorly among Iraqis.
"Iraq is a partner, is fighting ISIS on behalf of the world, and U.S. and Iraqi soldiers are fighting side-by- side and scoring a lot of successes against ISIS. So the administration should have thought that the partners shouldn't be treated like this, and shouldn't be isolated, shouldn't be excluded in a way that left such a negative perspective among the Iraqis," he told Reuters.
Thousands of Iraqis have fought alongside U.S. troops for years or worked as translators since the U.S.-led invasion in 2003. Many have resettled in the United States after being threatened for working with U.S. troops.
Sudani said the jury is still out on Trump.
"The administration yet not prevailing - or revealing - their own, you know, clear policies for the future, especially whether internally or externally, foreign policies as well as domestic policies," said Sudani, who now lives in Virginia.
The U.S. system of checks and balances "would really mitigate our concerns as a Middle Eastern in the United States. But that does not diminish the concerns," he told Reuters.
"We are still looking forward to see visibly, clearly, what are these policies...what kind of approach that they will deal with the Middle East or with any other region in the world."
Members of the Paterson community said they had hope for the Trump administration.
"He is erratic, and he's going to try, I guess, to do things that may be unfavorable for many Americans, but that's why we have checks and balances in the system, that's why we have our representatives in government. And we still have hope that, you know, we can still make America great again in what it means to all Americans, you know, not just a select few," said Abir Khandaker.
"We have to wait and give him more time because we know what people, you know, the statements he made when he ran for office as a president, it's different when it comes to reality, you know. So, actions, as they say, actions speak louder than words. So, we will see, you know, in the coming days, in the coming months, what's going to happen. And then we can make really, we can tell, you know, what type of president we have right now," Yehia Aboremaila said.
Trump's original travel ban resulted in more than two dozen lawsuits in U.S. courts. The Justice Department estimated 60,000 people had their visas revoked by the first order but senior administration officials said those visas were now valid again for entry into the United States.
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