UNWTO raises deep concern over US travel ban
Days after the event, the World Tourism Organisation has moved to express its “deep concern” and “strong condemnation” over the recently announced travel ban by the United States of America.
The ban announced on Friday, effectively bars nationals of seven countries - Iraq, Syria, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia and Yemen – from entering the US.
The United Nations specialised agency for tourism argued the travel ban, based on nationality, is contrary to the principles of freedom of travel and travel facilitation promoted by the international tourism community.
UNWTO officials also claim the ban will hinder the immense benefits of the tourism sector brings in terms of economic growth and job creation to many countries, including the USA.
“Global challenges demand global solutions and the security challenges that we face today should not prompt us to build new walls; on the contrary, isolationism and blind discriminatory actions will not lead to increased security but rather to growing tensions and threats”, said UNWTO secretary general, Taleb Rifai.
“Besides the direct impact, the image of a country which imposes travel bans in such a hostile way will surely be affected among visitors from all over the world and risk dumping travel demand to the USA.”