A Los Angeles federal judge has issued a ruling ordering President Donald Trump's administration to allow immigrants from the seven Muslim-majority countries listed in his executive order ban into the United states if they have initial clearance for legal residency.
The ruling was made by U.S. District Judge Andre Birotte Jr. on Jan 31, the Daily Mail reported. The decision came shortly after four other states also issued rulings to limit Trump's controversial executive order.
Birotte's ruling focuses on a large group of people who are outside of the United States trying to get in. It orders U.S. officials to refrain from "removing, detaining or blocking the entry of plaintiffs or any other person ... with a valid immigrant visa" even if they are from any of the seven nations listed in Trump's ban.
However, Birotte's ruling does not apply to students, tourists or business travelers with non-immigrant visas. Immigrant visas are the first prerequisite to becoming a lawful permanent resident or green card holder, according to the U.S. Department of State.
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Attorney Julie Ann Goldberg said they pushed for the ruling after discovering a move by the U.S. State Department to cancel the immigrant visas of people from Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Iran, Iraq, Libya and Yemen.
Goldberg said that more than 200 people with immigrant visas from Yemen who had relatives in the United States were left stranded in Djibouti after being barred from flying into the country following Trump's executive order on Jan. 27.
"It's terrible because I have children here who are without their parents," Goldberg told Reuters.
Some of the 200 people included U.S. citizens whose parents were traveling with immigrant visas, Goldberg added.