Federal judge extends order blocking Trump's travel ban
LOS ANGELES: The judge who halted President Donald Trump's revised travel ban on refugees and arrivals from six mainly Muslim countries has extended his order.
After a hearing lasting several hours, US District Judge Derrick Watson in Hawaii said on Wednesday he had turned his original temporary restraining order into a preliminary injunction.
Such an injunction generally has no set expiration date, said Hawaii state Attorney General Doug Chin, meaning Mr Trump will be barred from enforcing the ban while it is contested in court.
The US Justice Department is expected to appeal to the US 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.
Hawaii was the first of several US states to sue over the amended ban.
The government had asked Judge Watson to limit his first ruling to just the part of the order involving the six Muslim countries - Somalia, Iran, Syria, Sudan, Libya and Yemen, the New York Times reported.
Justice Department attorney Chad Readler argued before the judge that the refugee resettlement restriction had no effect on far-flung Hawaii, the paper said.
But the judge rejected the argument. He said 20 refugees had been accepted in Hawaii since 2010, the Times reported.
Hawaii's Attorney General Doug Chin praised the new court ruling.
"With a preliminary injunction in place, people in Hawaii with family in the six affected Muslim-majority countries - as well as Hawaii students, travellers and refugees across the world - face less uncertainty," he said. - AFP