Lifting the Muslim ban is the most anticipated immigration policy change the world is waiting for from the U.S. It has been a tumultuous 4 years for U.S. immigration and Joe Biden’s promise to lift the travel ban in his first 100 days in office is the steadiness we have been waiting for. It is the first change needed to indicate a move in a positive direction for the U.S.
In war torn countries such as Syria and Iraq, citizens are reliant on countries such as the U.S. for refuge. People flee their countries in the hopes of obtaining protection and a better way of life than the one currently available in their countries. The Muslim ban prevents the ability for people to seek asylum or refuge. Granted the implementation of the ban was meant as a protective measure for the U.S. against radicals. However the manner in which it was executed ended up being highlighted as one of the biggest acts of discrimination against the Muslim community and an even greater infringement of human rights.
The first version of the travel ban was approved by the Supreme Court of the United States, which stated that the president had the authority to decide who can be excluded from entering the United States. However one of the man issues with the travel ban was that there was no exclusion criteria, it was a blanket ban that covered at first a few Muslim majority countries but as the years progressed the list kept increasing. Was Trump saying that only people from Muslim majority countries are capable of terrorism attacks and that all these radicals are only from the Muslim majority countries? Evidently, we would never truly receive the answer to this and thankfully so.
The effects of the travel ban are deeper than just travel restrictions. Families have not been able to reunite, and this highlighted an internal problem with religious bias. Joe Biden’s vision toward positive inclusive changes in immigration policies is exactly what America needs.
From a Middle East perspective the Muslim ban affected families looking to immigrate to the U.S. to start their family lives and settle down. For countries such as the United Arab Emirates (“UAE”) where there is a mix of different nationalities people often meet their spouse and start families irrespective of nationalities. As the country does not provide citizenship, these families would primarily start looking at other countries to obtain citizenship. The U.S. is usually at the top of the list and these families would save toward obtaining residency via the EB-5 immigrant investor program. While the UAE is not part of the ban list, the people that reside in the country could hold nationality from one of the countries from the banned list. This is ultimately an insurmountable hurdle for these families.
The EB-5 immigrant investor program has been increasingly popular in the recent years, most of its applicants from the Middle East are Indian, Pakistan, and nationals from Muslim majority countries. Since the first version of the travel ban was in effect citizens from these Muslim majority countries have had to obtain U.S. citizenship through the purchasing of an alternative citizenship. This is often referred to as citizenship by investment, and based off that new citizenship they would then apply for the U.S.
It is time for the U.S. to start opening up to the rest of the world and allowing immigrants from all nationalities to enter. Exclusion for entering the U.S. should be based on whether the applicant fails as per the visa requirements and criteria and not based on their religion. Furthermore, immigration has proved to be a crucial contribution to the U.S. economy and thus opening the U.S. will prove to be a positive aid to the U.S. economy.
Our team of U.S. licensed lawyers have years of experience in helping individuals and families apply for U.S. residency via the EB-5 program. If you are ready to start your migration journey with The American Legal Center of Dubai, contact us today for more information.