U.S. Bishops’ Chair on Migration Responds to Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals Decision

February 10, 2017 By Public Affairs Office

WASHINGTON—On February 9, 2017, athree-judge panel of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuitissued a unanimous decision upholding a lower court's temporary restrainingorder (TRO) blocking the implementation of several key provisions of ExecutiveOrder 13769. The TRO was put in place by the U.S. District Court for theWestern District of Washington on February 3, 2017. The provisions that thathave temporarily been blocked by the TRO include: a 120 day halt of the U.S.refugee resettlement program; an indefinite prohibition of resettling andadmitting Syrian refugees; a preference for resettling Christian minorities; acase by case evaluation of refugee admission during the 120 day pause onresettlement; and a 90 day prohibition on entry, travel, and visas forindividuals from the seven identified predominantly-Muslim countries of Iraq,Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen.

In response to the Appeals Courtruling, Most Reverend Joe Vasquez, Bishop of Austin, Texas, and Chair of theCommittee on Migration stated: "We welcome the decision of the 9th CircuitCourt of Appeals. We respect the rule of law and the American judicial process.We remain steadfast in our commitment to resettling refugees and all thosefleeing persecution. At this time, we remain particularly dedicated to ensuringthat affected refugee and immigrant families are not separated and that theycontinue to be welcomed to our country. We will continue to welcome thenewcomer as it is a vital part of our Catholic faith and an enduring element ofour American values and tradition."

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Keywords: Bishop Joe Vasquez,U.S. Court of Appeals for Ninth Circuit, temporary restraining order (TRO),Executive Order, refugee resettlement, Syrian refugees, Christian minorities,travel, Muslim countries, newcomers.

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