By Lawrence Hurley
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Challengers to President Donald Trump's travel restrictions targeting several Muslim-majority countries on Thursday urged the U.S. Supreme Court not to dismiss a major case on the legality of the action even though he has issued a new policy to replace it.
In a separate filing, the Trump administration urged the court not to hear the case, asking the justices to throw out lower court rulings that had invalidated the ban and order that the cases challenging it be dismissed.
In letters to the court, the American Civil Liberties Union and the state of Hawaii said the court should decide the case that had been scheduled for arguments next week before being taken off the calendar following the White House announcement of a reworked ban.
The ACLU said that plaintiffs "retain an all-too-real stake in the outcome of the case" even though the original 90-day travel ban on people from six predominantly Muslim countries expired on Sept. 24.
The court on Sept. 25 asked all the parties involved in the case to file court papers expressing views on whether the case is moot, meaning there is nothing left to decide, because the ban expired.
The expired ban had targeted people from Iran, Libya, Syria, Yemen, Somalia and Sudan. The new open-ended ban announced on Sept. 24 removed Sudan from the list and blocked people from Chad and North Korea and certain government officials from Venezuela from entering the United States.
The weekly behind-closed-doors meeting in which the justices consider next steps in cases before them is scheduled for Friday morning.
(Reporting by Lawrence Hurley; Editing by Will Dunham)