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U.S. Court Sets Hearing On Hawaii’s Challenge To New Trump Travel Order

The U.S. state of Hawaii on March 8 filed the first court challenge to President Donald Trump's new executive order temporarily barring all refugees as well as visitors from six predominantly Muslim countries.

A U.S. District Court in Honolulu scheduled a hearing on the case for March 15, the day before the order is due to take effect.

The White House this week issued the order to replace an earlier, more sweeping one which had been challenged in court by several states besides Hawaii.

The new order is more narrowly written than the first one issued in January. It keeps a 90-day ban on travel to the United States by citizens of Iran, Libya, Syria, Somalia, Sudan, and Yemen but excludes Iraq, and applies the restriction only to new visa applicants.

It also suspends U.S. entry for all refugees for 120 days.

"This new executive order is nothing more than Muslim Ban 2.0," Hawaii Attorney General Doug Chin said. "Under the pretense of national security, it still targets immigrants and refugees. It leaves the door open for even further restrictions."

The U.S. Justice Department denied that, saying "we are confident that the president's actions are lawful to protect the national security of our country."

Copyright (c) 2015. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave NW, Ste 400, Washington DC 20036.

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