by WorldTribune Staff, January 29, 2017
While a slew of world leaders slammed President Donald Trump’s executive order banning the entry of citizens from seven Muslim countries to the United States, Egypt signaled its willingness to enforce the order.
On Jan. 27, five Iraqis and one Yemeni passenger were stopped from boarding an EgyptAir jet that would have brought them to New York City from Cairo. The passengers were stopped and re-directed to flights headed for their home countries despite holding valid visas, sources told Reuters.
Trump’s order blocks Muslims from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen from entering the U.S. for 120 days “and suspends the acceptance of refugees from Syria indefinitely.”
Egypt’s willingness to enforce the ban follows positive exchanges between President Abdul Fatah Sisi and Donald Trump before and after his election. Egypt’s economy has sustained hits from terrorism and differences with Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states over Syria and combating terrorism.
Meanwhile, the Shi’ite Islamist regime in Teheran announced that it would take “reciprocal measures” against the U.S in retaliation for Trump’s order.
“While respecting the American people and distinguishing between them and the hostile policies of the U.S. government, Iran will implement the principle of reciprocity until the offensive U.S. limitations against Iranian nationals are lifted,” a statement from the Iranian Foreign Ministry said.
“The restrictions against travel by Muslims to America are an open affront against the Muslim world and the Iranian nation in particular,” the statement concluded.
The statement made no mention of reports that Arab and Turkish airlines have already instructed travel agencies not to sell tickets to Iranians who want to fly to the United States.
Elsewhere, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and German Chancellor Angela Merkel slammed Trump’s order and said their own immigration policies would not change.
Merkel expressed her concerns during a call with Trump on Jan. 28, according to a tweeted statement from spokesman Steffen Seibert.
“It is not justified to put people of a particular background or religious belief under general suspicion” even as governments try to grapple with the threat of terrorism, the statement said.
Trudeau, in a tweet, said Canada would welcome those fleeing “persecution, terror and war. Canadians will welcome you, regardless of your faith.”
London Mayor Sadiq Khan, the city’s first Muslim mayor, said on Facebook that Trump’s order was “shameful and cruel” and “flies in the face of the values of freedom and tolerance that the USA was built upon.”
Former Mexican President Vicente Fox tweeted that the order had “united the world” against Trump.
House Speaker Paul Ryan voiced support for Trump’s order, crediting the president with taking the issue of immigration seriously.
“President Trump is right to make sure we are doing everything possible to know exactly who is entering our country,” Ryan said.
Ryan also maintained that he supports the refugee resettlement program but believes that it is time to “re-evaluate and strengthen the visa vetting process.”