Now Arab Gulf’s Biggest Airlines Reveal Impact

President Donald Trump’s travel ban on immigrant visa holders from seven Muslim nations has had little impact on travel, at least at the major Arabian Gulf carriers that control much of the airspace between the U.S. and the Middle East.

“A very small number of our passengers were affected by the new U.S. immigration entry requirements,” Dubai-based carrier Emirates Airlines said in a statement.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) followed an executive order by Trump on Jan. 27 to ban travel from seven countries, including war zones like Yemen, Syria, Iraq and Libya. The move was immediately called a “Muslim ban” on social media, leading to protests against the order in Washington, New York City, and at airports throughout the country. A little over 1,100 people were reportedly denied boarding this week because of the ban, CBP said on its website. But William Cocks, a spokesperson for the State Department’s Bureau of Conslar Affairs said Friday that “roughly 60,000 individual visas were revoked”.  A Federal judge in Seattle ordered a stay on the ban later in the day on Friday. It is unclear how Homeland Security will respond to the injunction.

Major Muslim nations like Saudi Arabia as well as United Arab Emirates were not part of the ban.

Two green card holders were stopped at the border during that time frame, but one was from Canada and he decided to go there instead of continuing onto the U.S., according to U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

Initial rules to ban green card holders were scrapped following harsh criticism from U.S. family members. Green card holders are one step away from citizenship. Tourist and H-1B worker visas were also banned.

Abu Dhabi-based Etihad Airways said their flight crews were unaffected, but that a number of passengers were not allowed to board. Qatar Airways from Doha did not comment on its Tehran to New York route, which leaves daily from JFK International. Iranians without diplomatic visas or green cards are banned from entering the U.S. for 90 days.

A State Department spokesperson said that the executive order does not effect refugees already vetted for travel to the U.S. Others may be let in on a case by case basis while the order stands. Some 900 refugees from around the world were in transit when the order was released and will be admitted to the U.S. by the end of this week, including a small number from the seven countries. The State Department did not say which countries or how many were coming.

The Trump Administration says the ban gives Homeland Security a chance to retool vetting procedures of passengers coming from countries known to be hotbeds of anti-American terrorism. Critics of the ban argue that a number of jihadis fighting in the seven countries carry passports from places unaffected by the executive order.