Australian tech industry lashes out at Trump’s new visa rules

Sydney, Jan 30 (IANS) Leading Australian technology companies are livid after US President Donald Trump recently announced changes to visa laws. They are petitioning with the Australian government to act, a media report said on Monday.

The changes could see workers affected across the sector, with industry group TechSydney saying many employees are dual-nationals who are required to visit and work in the US as part of their duties, Xinhua news agency reported.

Hichame Assi, HotelsCombined chief executive, and also a dual national British-Syrian who moved to Australia in 2008, is one of those affected, and can no longer travel to the US for the next 90 days due to the new rules.

“We employ people of all nationalities, including dual-nationality Australians,” Assi said in a statement on Monday.

“These developments in the US are not only disruptive to our business and our people, they’re very troubling and are creating more tension at a time when empathy is required,” Assi said.

The new visa rules will not result in any changes to citizens solely of Australia, and 36 other countries that are currently allied with the US.

Trump on Friday signed an executive order to restrict immigration from countries that he said are “compromised by terrorism.”

A White House official later named the restricted countries as Iran, Iraq, Syria, Sudan, Libya, Yemen and Somalia.