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Travel Ban Reveals Trump's Fake Empathy for Iranians

Travel Ban Reveals Trump's Fake Empathy for IraniansTravel Ban Reveals Trump's Fake Empathy for Iranians

Iran's top diplomat denounced as "fake" the populist empathetic tone used by the US president to refer to the situation of Iranians in his recent UN speech, citing the Sunday renewal of an expanded version of a US travel ban against Iranians and several other nationalities.

"Trump's fake empathy for Iranians rings ever more hollow, with his new and even more offensive travel ban against such outstanding citizens," Mohammad Javad Zarif tweeted.

The Trump administration updated the travel ban just hours before it was set to expire, NPR reported.

Iran, along with Libya, Syria, Yemen, Sudan and Somalia, was among the six countries, which were targeted by the previous ban.

In his last week's address to the General Debate of the United Nations General Assembly in New York, the hawkish president repeated his anti-Iran accusations of undemocratic governance and terrorism sponsorship, which Tehran has vehemently denied.  

"The longest-suffering victims of Iran's leaders are, in fact, its own people," he alleged.

In a proclamation signed by Trump on Sunday, the travel restrictions now include eight countries, a couple of which do not have a Muslim majority, as had been the case with all the nations in the original ban.

Chad, North Korea and Venezuela have been added.

The latter two are the first nations included in a version of the travel ban that do not have Muslim-majority populations, which had been a key issue in litigation challenging the ban as discriminatory based on religion.

Sudan has been dropped from the order.

Restrictions for Somalia will be relaxed for non-immigrant visitors, while restrictions for Iran will be relaxed for students and other exchange visitors.

The new restrictions on Chad and North Korea are a broad ban on nationals from those countries entering the US.

For Venezuela, restrictions apply to government officials and their immediate family.

These changes are set to take effect on Oct. 18, though the restrictions on Sudan will be lifted immediately, as a result of security baselines defined by the administration.

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