Fight over Trump travel restrictions back to appeals courts

SEATTLE (AP) — The fight over the latest version of President Donald Trump’s travel ban returns to two federal appeals courts this week.

A three-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals hears arguments in Seattle on Wednesday, followed by a full complement of 13 judges at the 4th Circuit in Richmond, Virginia, on Friday.

The ban targets about 150 million potential travelers from Chad, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Somalia, Syria and Yemen.

The administration is appealing rulings in Hawaii and Maryland that largely blocked the ban as discriminatory. Critics say the ban constitutes the “Muslim ban” Trump promised during his campaign.

The administration insists it’s necessary for national security.

The arguments come as Trump continues to stoke anti-Muslim sentiment. Last week, he drew a rebuke from British Prime Minister Theresa May’s office when he retweeted a string of inflammatory videos from a fringe British political group.