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People protest President Donald Trump's travel ban outside of the U.S. Court of Appeals in Seattle, Washington in May. Photo by David Ryder/Reuters

Groups say they’ll challenge Trump’s latest travel ban

The American Civil Liberties Union said Friday it will challenge the Trump administration’s latest travel ban, the first such legal action to be announced against the new ban.

The ACLU and other groups who had previously sued over the administration’s ban on visitors from six majority-Muslim countries said in a letter Friday to a federal judge in Maryland that they want to amend their existing lawsuit. The groups say the latest version of the ban, the administration’s third, also violates federal law and the Constitution.

Trump announced the latest restrictions last weekend after the previous ban expired. The restrictions are targeted at countries that the Department of Homeland Security says fail to share sufficient information with the U.S. or haven’t taken necessary security precautions. The new restrictions impact citizens of Chad, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Somalia, Syria, and Yemen — and some Venezuelan government officials and their families — and are to go into effect Oct. 18. The prior ban also included Sudan but didn’t include Chad, North Korea or Venezuela.

MORE: How Trump’s travel ban changed and what comes next

In their two-page letter, the ACLU and others say they want to amend their existing lawsuit to cover the president’s latest proclamation and seek a preliminary injunction “or other relief” suspending the visa and entry restrictions in the proclamation.

Justice Department spokesman Ian Prior said in an email after the ACLU announced its intention to take legal action that the department “will continue to vigorously defend the President’s inherent authority to keep this country safe.”