Supreme Court: Grandparents, grandkids exempted from Trump travel ban

People protest US President Donald Trump's travel ban outside of the US Court of Appeals in Seattle, Washington, US on May 15, 2017.
People protest US President Donald Trump's travel ban outside of the US Court of Appeals in Seattle, Washington, US on May 15, 2017.PHOTO: REUTERS

WASHINGTON (AFP) - The Supreme Court dealt President Donald Trump's government a fresh setback on Wednesday (July 19), saying its controversial travel ban cannot be applied to grandparents and other close relatives of people living in the US - for now.

The court accepted a Hawaii district judge's ruling last week that the Trump administration had too narrowly defined what constitutes "close family relationships" to determine exceptions to the ban on travellers from six mainly Muslim countries - Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen.

That left in place the judge's wider definition, which included grandparents, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, and cousins of people living in the United States.

But in its brief order, the court backed the Trump administration by staying the part of the Hawaii judge's ruling that would have expanded exemptions to its 120-day ban on all refugees.

The order said the Supreme Court's ruling is temporary pending a federal appeals court's pending review of the issues.