With a raft of Executive Orders, Biden reverses Muslim travel, returns US to WHO, Paris Agreement
London, Jan. 21, 2021 (AltAfrica)-With a raft of Executive Orders, US President Joe Biden Wednesday reversed several unpopular policies from former President Donald Trump, including what became known as the “Muslim ban”.
Among the most notable actions signed by Biden were to end the travel ban on some Muslim-majority countries. Trump issued the ban in what many said was unfair and racist.
Watch: US President Joe #Biden signs a raft of executive orders to launch his administration, including a decision to rejoin the Paris climate accord.https://t.co/W7FdrEbWxA pic.twitter.com/o5RC263CUd— Al Arabiya English (@AlArabiya_Eng) January 20, 2021
Hours after he was sworn-in as the 46th American president, Biden also halted a Trump order which helped fund the construction of the border wall with Mexico.
One of the Executive Orders mandated the US to rejoin the Paris Climate accord in 30 days – something which Biden vowed to do while on the campaign trail. French President Emmanuel Macron tweeted about the anticipated move earlier in the day
To @JoeBiden and @KamalaHarris.— Emmanuel Macron (@EmmanuelMacron) January 20, 2021
Best wishes on this most significant day for the American people!
We are together.
We will be stronger to face the challenges of our time. Stronger to build our future. Stronger to protect our planet. Welcome back to the Paris Agreement!
Biden also signed an order that will require the use of facemasks in federal buildings and relaunching the pandemic response team at the National Security Council. It was disbanded by Trump.
Battered by the coronavirus pandemic, millions of US citizens filed for unemployment and have been unable to pay off debt, including student loans. Biden asked to extend a freeze loan payments for federal student loans until Sept. 30.
The US will also rejoin the World Health Organization as per Biden’s order.
The move to re-engage with the WHO was welcomed by UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres who said it was “absolutely critical” for a more co-ordinated global response, his spokesman Stéphane Dujarric said.
Mr Biden has also revoked the presidential permit granted to the controversial Keystone XL Pipeline, which environmentalists and Native American groups have fought for more than a decade.
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki has said that more executive actions would be announced in the coming days and weeks.