The Obama administration is imposing new travel restrictions on certain Europeans who have visited Iran, Iraq, Syria or Sudan in the past five years.
But it is exempting certain travelers from the new restrictions, and some Republicans in Congress aren't happy about that. Key takeaways on the new visa waiver program:
— A law already in place is designed to keep Europeans who have fought for the Islamic State group from entering the U.S. by putting stricter limits on who can travel to the U.S. without a visa.
— The administration on Thursday announced rules on how the law will be implemented. It said the restrictions may not apply to people in certain occupations who travel to the four nations for business.
— In general, Europeans who have been to the four nations will have to get visas before traveling to the U.S.
— But people who traveled to those countries as journalists, for official work with humanitarian agencies or on behalf of international organizations, regional organizations and provincial or local governments may still be eligible to visit the U.S. without visas. Also, people who have traveled to Iran since July 14, 2015, or Iraq for "legitimate business-related purposes" may be allowed to come to the U.S. without visas.
— Some Republicans in Congress complained the Obama administration was trying to circumvent the will of Congress.
— People who can't visit the U.S. without a visa can apply for one through the U.S. Embassy or consulate in their home country.
— Most Europeans aren't affected.