The newly elected 45th President of the United States of America (USA) Donald Trump has truly stood by his words. Good or bad, at least this is one credit that he deserves. Of a number of commitments he had made to the American nation during his election campaign, one strong commitment he made was that, if elected to power, he would impose a travel ban on refugees and immigrants coming in to America particularly from the Islamic countries.

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On Friday, January 27, 2017, US President Donald Trump signed a sweeping executive order to suspend refugee arrivals and bar visas for travelers from seven Islamic countries namely Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. Though Pakistan’s name did not figure in the executive order under reference one could rightly pre-empt that it would appear in the next executive order that US President Donald Trump is keenly waiting to ink. Pakistan should be fully prepared to face the upcoming travel ban the US government is contemplating to impose on it, particularly after the White House Chief of Staff, Reince Priebus without mincing his words told CBS News that names of countries like Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and other countries may be added to the roster of banned countries as we move forward.

The executive order signed by US President Trump to impose a travel ban initially on seven Muslim countries has come under scathing criticism from not only the affected countries but also from other civilised nations of the world. The Americans too continue to vociferously condemn Trump’s executive order to impose a visa ban on Muslim countries. One can vividly see them vent their anger and concern over the critical issue by taking out protest marches in the US capital Washington and across many other states of the United States of America.

While civilized societies of the world continue to condemn the US government’s travel ban decision, and a US federal judge blocks part of President Donald Trump’s travel ban, the incumbent US government seems adamant to further extend this list and include Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Pakistan and other Muslim countries in it.

In this highly inflammable scenario, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s offer to accommodate, in his country, the refugees affected and expected to be affected in the future by the US travel ban has indeed come as a breath of fresh air for them. His courage and magnanimity has been immensely appreciated by the civilized world out-and-out. Bravo Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

Whatever is happening in the US today is beyond ones stretch of imagination. The civilised world in general and the Muslim world in particular are at loss to understand as to how things would shape up, under the new US administration, in the days and months to come. If this is how the beginning is, God forbid, the end could be even worse.

M. FAZAL ELAHI,

Islamabad, February 2.