Judge blocks Trump's second attempt at travel ban

US President Donald J. Trump.
US President Donald J. Trump. EPA/SHAWN THEW

DONALD Trump's second attempt at implementing his controversial travel ban has suffered a major setback.

Hours before Mr Trump's revised executive order was due to take effect today, a federal judge in Hawaii issued a nationwide restraining order, suspending key elements of it.

"The illogic of the government's contentions is palpable,” Judge Derrick Watson wrote in a 43-page ruling. "The notion that one can demonstrate animus toward any group of people by targeting all of them at once is fundamentally flawed.”

Judge Watson said Mr Trump's statements during last year's presidential campaign were "significant and unrebutted evidence of religious animus driving the promulgation of the executive order and its related predecessor.”

It's an embarrassing case of deja vu for the president, who abandoned his original travel ban after it was similarly shot down by the courts in February. He issued a more narrowly defined order on March 6 in the hope it would fare better.

The new order temporarily banned immigration from six majority-Muslim countries: Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. It also suspended America's refugee program for 120 days.

Topics:  donald trump

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