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Trump signs revised travel ban, exempts Iraqis

US President Donald Trump signed a revised ban on refugees

and on travelers from six Muslim-majority nations Monday, scaling back the order to exempt Iraqis and permanent US residents. With his first attempt frozen by federal courts, Trump signed a second order suspending refugee admissions for 120 days and halting new visas for travelers from Syria, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Yemen and Sudan. The White House said Trump -- who is embroiled in controversy over his aides' links to Russia and his own Twitter outbursts -- signed the order behind closed doors Monday morning. The new order comes into effect on March 16 and is meant to address legal problems. It explicitly exempts Iraqis, legal permanent residents and valid visa holders. "The principles of the executive order remain the same," said White House spokesman Sean Spicer. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, one of three cabinet members rolled out to present the order in Trump's absence, described it as "a vital measure" for strengthening national security. Attorney General Jeff Sessions added that it "provides a needed pause" allowing a review of how America deals with travelers from "countries of concern." "Three of these nations are state sponsors of terrorism," Sessions said, referring to Iran, Sudan and Syria.