Middle East

Trump travel ban: Anger and regret from nations hit by new order

An Iranian woman holds a placard showing a caricature of US President Donald Trump being punched by a hand wearing a bracelet of the Iranian flag Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Iran has called the ban "illegal, illogical and contrary to international rules"

Donald Trump's executive order renewing a travel ban on citizens of six mainly Muslim countries, and removing Iraq from the list, has been broadly criticised in some of the countries it affects, and shrugged off in others. 

Iran, which has the greatest number of people travelling to America, said it would keep a retaliatory ban on US citizens announced in January in response.

The story also made the top of most news agendas and trended on social media there, though reaction this time round has not been as pronounced as when the original ban was announced.

"White House adjusts its racism" was one pointed headline in a hard-line conservative newspaper, though other media outlets reported the story more factually.

'Evil plan'

Iraq's removal from the list was cause for some comment as well in Iran.

"Trump's new order says that Iraqis have co-operated with America on the issue but it says that Iran has not co-operated," Iran's Deputy Foreign Minister Majid Takht-Ravanchi said.

"It is obvious that Iran has not co-operated with the American government, and it is not right to compare Iran and Iraq on the issue. The two countries are in different conditions."

An influential conservative MP, Hossein Naqavi-Hosseini, went further, alleging that removing Iraq from the list was part of an "evil" plan to cause discord among the countries in the region.

'Harsh decision'

Somalia and Sudan both criticised the ban as well, saying their nationals added to America's community rather than detracted from it. 

"We have to talk about what the Somali people have contributed rather than a few people who may cause a problem," Somalia's President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed said.

Mr Mohamed, who has dual Somali and US citizenship, said he would have preferred the ban to have been lifted but acknowledged his country had to address the issue of extremists and groups like al-Shabab as well. 

Sudan's foreign ministry called it a harsh decision and expressed its "disapproval and deep regret", urging the US to remove it from its list of countries supporting terrorism.

A ministry statement said Sudanese citizens had never been involved in terrorism in the US and that Sudan played a big role as a partner in fighting terrorism. 

'Deep satisfaction' in Iraq

Responses from Libya, Yemen and Syria have been muted, as was the case when the original ban was first announced.

It was only in Iraq that there appeared to be any joy. The country's foreign ministry voiced its "deep satisfaction" over the decision and said the move would strengthen its co-operation with Washington, including fighting against terrorism.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Iraqis welcomed their country being excluded from the list of the nations affected by the ban

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