Senator Alice-Mary Higgins opposes President Trump’s travel ban

In response to President Trump’s executive order banning travel to the U.S.A. from seven Muslim-majority countries, Senator Higgins joined others in the Seanad in raising grave concerns about its legal and moral implications. She highlighted the need for urgent review of the preclearance agreement in effect at Irish airports to ensure Irish and international laws are upheld under the ban.

It is important that we respond to the ban by reaffirming and strengthening the EU's own deteriorating standards for protection of migrant and refugee rights. In particular, it is extremely worrying to see  new immigration controls implemented through "partnership agreements" which the EU has been negotiating in recent months not only with Turkey but also with many other countries including Afghanistan and Sudan.

Additionally, the long-standing concerns over US military use of Shannon airport have a further urgency in the context of the travel ban and recent statements on torture and the proposal to put Steve Bannon on the US National Security Committee.

On Thursday 2nd February, I protested with hundreds of others outside the US embassy where I called for the people of Ireland to be champions of refugee rights and to demonstrate unity and solidarity within and across our communities.

I wrote to the Minister for Transport, Shane Ross to raise these concerns and ask him how he would respond to the ban in terms of Ireland's pre-clearance arrangements with the US.

More Stories