U.S. judge extends suspension of travel ban

He said at the very least, the administration should be allowed to enforce the 120-day refugee ban, which hasn't been blocked by the Maryland judge.

In his original ruling, Watson said he believed that extensive evidence showed the President and key aides intended the revised order, as well as the original version, to have been based on "animus" toward Muslims. Watson issued a permanent injunction on Wednesday, which simply ensures Trump's order will remain enjoined while the court's assess it on the merits.

"The Justice Department strongly disagrees with the federal district court's ruling". Soon after trump signed the ban in February, it caused a worldwide outrage, with many people taking to airports across America to protest the order, which was deemed anti-Muslim.

The state had filed its challenge on the grounds that its economy would suffer from a decline in tourism, citing reports of a "nosedive" in travel to the United States following the orders, while its state universities would encounter difficulties in recruiting students and faculty.

The Trump administration argued both travel bans were meant to enhance USA security - not discriminate against Muslims. "The court will not crawl into a corner, pull the shutters closed, and pretend it has not seen what it has".

Watson rejected the government's request to narrow his ruling to apply only to the six-nation ban.

Such arguments did not convince Watson, who considered that the order violates the clause establishing the Constitution, which prohibits religious discrimination.

Hawaii's attorney general Chin praised the new court ruling. The Department of Justice didn't immediately comment on the latest ruling.

Watson's original order was a temporary restraining order - an emergency measure that ends after a certain time period.

Earlier this month, Trump signed a new executive order which blocked entry to the USA for nationals of six Muslim-majority countries for 90 days, and halted the United States refugee programme.

Other provisions of the order have little or no effect on Hawaii, including a suspension of the nation's refugee program, Department of Justice attorney Chad Readler said Wednesday.

After Judge Watson's temporary order was issued, a U.S. journalist from the New York Observer questioned why some Muslim countries were not included. Elshikh says his mother-in-law, a Syrian national living in Syria, has been prevented from visiting the familt in Hawaii because of Trump's executive order.

Government lawyers argued that the revised travel ban was written to address the concerns raised by judges, which included the removal of the section that gave preference to religious minorities.

Trump has said the new order is a "watered down" version of the initial ban, to which Chin responded in court, "We can not fault the president for being politically incorrect, but we do fault him for being constitutionally incorrect".

After a hearing in Honolulu, the judge decided last night to turn his sentence into a long-term cautionary action. If the court sides with the federal government, it would not have a direct effect on the Hawaii ruling, legal experts said.