Yasir, a Muslim originally from Pakistan who has lived in Hong Kong for more than a decade, seemed to wake up to a different world on January 28 after one signature from Donald Trump, the newly elected US president.
In a seven-page document titled "Executive order protecting the nation from foreign terrorist entry into the United States", citizens from seven Muslim-majority nations, including refugees, were told they had been banned from entering America.
The order would soon be suspended by a federal judge, but not before it had disrupted the lives of hundreds of people. The ensuing furore saw protests on streets across the US, but the impact of the billionaire businessman's move sent ripple effects far beyond the country's borders.
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With the order in limbo owing to a long line of legal challenges, the president's team issued a new, revised version on Monday, this time only targeting six nations.
Yasir, 27, who prefers not to reveal his full name for fear of stalling his academic ambitions, said that despite the few changes introduced, the directive remained the same at heart, and that the shock he had felt when he first heard news of the ban would not be fading anytime soon with Trump vowing to pursue his hardline immigration agenda.