Trump says his travel ban needed to ensure U.S. religious freedom

 Reuters International

FEB 2, 2017 – 
DAY 9 / JANUARY 28: Russian President Vladimir Putin and President Trump agreed to try to rebuild U.S.-Russia ties and to cooperate in Syria, the Kremlin said, after the two men spoke for the first time since Trump’s inauguration. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst


By Jeff Mason and Roberta Rampton

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump defended his order to temporarily bar entry to people from seven majority-Muslim nations, which has come under intense criticism at home and abroad, saying on Thursday it was crucial to ensuring religious freedom and tolerance in America.

Trump, speaking at a prayer breakfast attended by politicians, faith leaders and guests including Jordan’s King Abdullah, said he wanted to prevent a “beachhead of intolerance” from spreading in the United States.

“The world is in trouble, but we’re going to straighten it out, OK? That’s what I do – I fix things,” Trump said in his speech.

Trump’s executive order a week ago put a 120-day halt on the U.S. refugee program, barred Syrian refugees indefinitely and imposed a 90-day suspension on people from seven predominantly Muslim countries – Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. The measure, which Trump says is aimed at protecting the country from terrorist attacks, has drawn protests and legal challenges.



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