US President Donald Trump is expected to sign multiple executive orders on immigration on Wednesday (25 January) at the US Department of Homeland Security.
Congressional aides and immigration experts briefed on the matter told Reuters that the executive orders are expected to involve restrictions for refugees and some visa holders from Iraq, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen.
CNN analyst Juliette Kayyem said the Department of Homeland Security is considering "ending [the] Syrian refugee programme and a suspension of Muslim-majority country visas".
In a subsequent tweet, Kayyem said the department had been asked to "determine whether ending entire refugee programme doable and favouring religious minorities in revamp".
Trump tweeted late Tuesday (24 January) that there will be a major announcement made regarding national security on Wednesday. "Big day planned on NATIONAL SECURITY tomorrow," he wrote. "Among many other things, we will build the wall!"
Since taking office on Friday (20 January), Trump has largely stuck to continuing the Obama administration's immigration policy. Despite promises to implement "extreme vetting" of immigrants and stop immigration from certain nations on "day one," the administration has instead focused on other issues.
"In the Cold War, we had an ideological screening test. The time is long overdue to develop a new screening test for the threats we face today. I call it extreme vetting," Trump said in August, according to The Hill.
The then-GOP nominee explained that the vetting would review whether immigrants coming to the US shared American ideological values, including on LGBT rights and religious tolerance.
Trump also suggested a ban on all incoming Muslims or establishing a national registry of Muslims. During his confirmation hearing earlier this month, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson did not rule out the possibility of a registry but said it would be extended to other groups that threaten the US.
"I would need to have a lot more information around how such an approach would even be constructed," Tillerson said. "If it were a tool for vetting it obviously extends to other groups as well that are threats to the US."
In the first two rounds of executive actions, Trump focused on abortion, healthcare, trade, federal hiring and regulations, according to Vox. White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer told reporters on Monday (23 January) that the administration would primarily focus on undocumented immigrants with criminal records or who pose a threat to national security.