United States President Joe Biden has begun to undo some of Donald Trump’s key policies, hours after being sworn in, including ending the travel ban on some majority-Muslim countries.
He said US “was built on a foundation of religious freedom and tolerance, a principle enshrined in the United States Constitution”.
“Nevertheless, the previous administration enacted a number of executive orders and presidential proclamations that prevented certain individuals from entering the United States – first from primarily Muslim countries, and later, from largely African countries.
“Those actions are a stain on our national conscience and are inconsistent with our long history of welcoming people of all faiths”
Mr Biden said the actions of Mr Trump’s administration had undermined national security.
However, the new president said the US would still take threats to the country seriously.
“When visa applicants request entry to the United States, we will apply a rigorous, individualised vetting system. But we will not turn our backs on our values with discriminatory bans on entry into the United States.”