International News

Hawaii judge blocks Donald Trump’s latest travel ban hours before it was to go into effect

The White House is likely to appeal against the ruling, which it called ‘dangerously flawed’.

A federal judge in the United States on Tuesday blocked the implementation of President Donald Trump’s latest travel ban, just hours before it was set to go into full effect, The Washington Post reported.

US District Judge Derrick K Watson from Hawaii said Trump’s order “suffers from precisely the same maladies as its predecessor” and “plainly discriminates based on nationality”. The judge noted that the ban on travellers from eight nations does not show that people coming from these countries would be detrimental to the US.

The latest ban, which was supposed to go into effect early on Wednesday, restricted travellers from North Korea, Venezuela, Chad, Iran, Libya, Syria, Yemen and Somalia. The government said that embassies and consulates across the world had been told to process visas for people from six countries regularly, but it would implement the order for people from Venezuela and North Korea.

The US administration is likely to appeal against Watson’s ruling, the report said. The White House called the judgment “dangerously flawed” and said it “undercuts the president’s efforts to keep the American people safe and enforce minimum security standards for entry into the United States”.

The US Department of Justice will vigorously defend the travel order, which is vital to ensure that foreign nations “comply with the minimum security standards required for the integrity of our immigration system and the security of our nation”, the White House said. “We are, therefore, confident that the judiciary will ultimately uphold the president’s lawful and necessary action and swiftly restore its vital protections for the safety of the American people.”

The earlier travel order, which came into effect on June 30, barred visitors from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen from entering the US. On September 25, the government had decided that besides adding three countries to the order, Iraqis will have to face increased vetting procedures. Restrictions on citizens from Sudan were also lifted.

The ban was scaled back since it was first implemented and blocked by courts in January. There were massive protests and a lot of confusion at US airports after Trump brought the first ban in place, mostly because immigration officers were not allowing anyone in from certain countries, even those with legitimate reasons, green cards and residence permits.

Trump has insisted that the ban is to protect the US from terrorism and to allow immigration officials to vet those entering the US more closely. But his efforts have been seen as part of a separate agenda. While campaigning for presidency, Trump had called for a “total and complete shutdown of Muslims” entering the US.

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Following a mountaineer as he reaches the summit of Mount Everest

Accounts from Vikas Dimri’s second attempt reveal the immense fortitude and strength needed to summit the Everest.

Vikas Dimri made a huge attempt last year to climb the Mount Everest. Fate had other plans. Thwarted by unfavourable weather at the last minute, he came so close and yet not close enough to say he was at the top. But that did not deter him. Vikas is back on the Everest trail now, and this time he’s sharing his experiences at every leg of the journey.

The Everest journey began from the Lukla airport, known for its dicey landing conditions. It reminded him of the failed expedition, but he still moved on to Namche Bazaar - the staging point for Everest expeditions - with a positive mind. Vikas let the wisdom of the mountains guide him as he battled doubt and memories of the previous expedition. In his words, the Everest taught him that, “To conquer our personal Everest, we need to drop all our unnecessary baggage, be it physical or mental or even emotional”.

Vikas used a ‘descent for ascent’ approach to acclimatise. In this approach, mountaineers gain altitude during the day, but descend to catch some sleep. Acclimatising to such high altitudes is crucial as the lack of adequate oxygen can cause dizziness, nausea, headache and even muscle death. As Vikas prepared to scale the riskiest part of the climb - the unstable and continuously melting Khumbhu ice fall - he pondered over his journey so far.

His brother’s diagnosis of a heart condition in his youth was a wakeup call for the rather sedentary Vikas, and that is when he started focusing on his health more. For the first time in his life, he began to appreciate the power of nutrition and experimented with different diets and supplements for their health benefits. His quest for better health also motivated him to take up hiking, marathon running, squash and, eventually, a summit of the Everest.

Back in the Himalayas, after a string of sleepless nights, Vikas and his team ascended to Camp 2 (6,500m) as planned, and then descended to Base Camp for the basic luxuries - hot shower, hot lunch and essential supplements. Back up at Camp 2, the weather played spoiler again as a jet stream - a fast-flowing, narrow air current - moved right over the mountain. Wisdom from the mountains helped Vikas maintain perspective as they were required to descend 15km to Pheriche Valley. He accepted that “strength lies not merely in chasing the big dream, but also in...accepting that things could go wrong.”

At Camp 4 (8,000m), famously known as the death zone, Vikas caught a clear glimpse of the summit – his dream standing rather tall in front of him.

It was the 18th of May 2018 and Vikas finally reached the top. The top of his Everest…the top of Mount Everest!

Watch the video below to see actual moments from Vikas’ climb.

Play

Vikas credits his strength to dedication, exercise and a healthy diet. He credits dietary supplements for helping him sustain himself in the inhuman conditions on Mount Everest. On heights like these where the oxygen supply drops to 1/3rd the levels on the ground, the body requires 3 times the regular blood volume to pump the requisite amount of oxygen. He, thus, doesn’t embark on an expedition without double checking his supplements and uses Livogen as an aid to maintain adequate amounts of iron in his blood.

Livogen is proud to have supported Vikas Dimri on his ambitious quest and salutes his spirit. To read more about the benefits of iron, see here. To read Vikas Dimri’s account of his expedition, click here.

This article was produced by the Scroll marketing team on behalf of Livogen and not by the Scroll editorial team.