Donald Trump
Donald Trump

Washington: In a significant blow to President Donald Trump, a US federal appeals court yesterday rejected a request by his administration to immediately reinstate travel ban on citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries.

The Justice Department had made the request with the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco as part of an appeal against a lower court order halting the travel ban on people from Iraq, Iran, Syria, Sudan, Somalia, Libya and Yemen. “Appellants’ request for an immediate administrative stay pending full consideration of the emergency motion for a stay pending appeal is denied,” the ruling said.

The court asked for both sides to file legal briefs before it makes its final decision. It asked challengers of the ban to respond to the appeal, and for the Justice Department to file a counter-response by today. The court’s denial of stay means the people from affected Muslim countries will be allowed, for now, to enter the US. The administration was fighting Seattle federal judge James Robart’s decision on Friday that imposed a temporary, nationwide halt to Trump’s order barring refugees and those from seven majority-Muslim nations from entering the country.