Trump’s Muslim Travel Ban Impacts Global Business and Meetings Held in US, Including ICANN

By January 31, 2017 Governance No Comments

Donald Trump by Per TrystadThe new US President Donald Trump issued a ban on travellers from seven Muslim-majority nations last week, but not those he does business with, and the ban has had severe consequences for tourists and businesses alike. And it will cost the US with conferences and meetings with participants from around the world to be moved to other countries.

In the domain name world ICANN and the IETF (Internet Engineering Taskforce) have both had to consider alternatives for board members and industry participants who, for now at least, are either banned or fear they will be banned.

Two ICANN staff members told Motherboard they are unable to attend various meetings because they can’t go in and out of the US. One of those impacted is ICANN board member Kaveh Ranjbar who was unable to travel to Los Angeles for an ICANN board meeting this week. Ranjbar was born in Iran and lives in the Netherlands, where he is the Chief Information Officer of RIPE NCC.

In a statement to Motherboard, ICANN global media coordinator James Cole said the organization is “working to understand the potential impact for our community, Board and staff travellers, and what we can do to ensure ICANN’s continued openness and accessibility.”

Another ICANN participant, “Farzaneh Badiei, an Iranian-born associate researcher at the Georgia Institute of Technology and the chair of non-commercial users constituency at ICANN, said that she will not be able to attend the March 2017 ICANN community forum in Copenhagen.”

While both will be able to attend the relative meetings remotely, they are still unable to participate as effectively as being there in person, and hence unable to contribute effectively and do their jobs effectively.

Another impact is global meetings and conferences will, while the ban remains in place, be moved to mainly Europe and Canada.