President Tommy E. Remengesau, Jr. in his weekly press conference on February 22, 2017 answered media concerns over a draft presidential executive order on immigration policies by United States President Donald Trump that has been reported by regional news organizations.
When asked if he has seen the draft executive order and whether he had urgent concerns, President Remengesau stated, “yes, we have examined the draft executive order and I must advise that reacting to a draft is too premature at this time. It is extremely difficult to assess and quantify any risks for Palauan citizens that may be involved while the executive order is in draft form and has not been issued yet, and we do not know what the Homeland Security regulations would look like. Only until it is signed and issued, will we be able to determine its impacts on Palauan citizens, if any. We are keeping close communication with our U.S. Ambassador Hersey Kyota and the U.S. Embassy in Palau for any developments regarding the draft executive order.”
President Remengesau noted that what is important for all Palauan Citizens traveling to or living in the United States and its territories is that the Compact of Free Association Act between Palau and the United States is Public Law (United States Public Law 99- 658; H.J.Res.626 — 99th Congress (1985-1986), and would not be so simply superseded by a presidential executive order.
“What is important is that we are informed of the status and privileges afforded by the Compact for Palauan citizens traveling to and living in the United States of America. The United States Department of Homeland Security provides for Palau a very informative fact sheet called – Fact Sheet: Status of Citizens of the Republic of Palau. This document states all important information pertaining to Palauan citizens’ status in the United States.
“I have directed the Press Secretary to disseminate these contents throughout all of our media network and U.S. Ambassador Kyota to communicate accordingly with our fellow Palauans in the United States.” President Remengesau added. Visit the United States Citizenship and Immigration website at www.uscis.gov for more information.
The Homeland Security Fact Sheet on the Status of Citizens of the Republic of Palau may be found directly online at: https://www.uscis.gov/sites/default/files/USCIS/Verification/I-