The US Supreme Court ruled President Donald Trump’s travel ban on six mainly Muslim countries can go into full effect, keeping the legal challenges pending.
The decision is a boost for Trump’s policy against travelers from Chad, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria and Yemen.
The ruling covers the third version of the directive that the president has issued since taking office.
Seven of the nine justices lifted injunctions on Monday (December 4) imposed by lower courts against the policy.
Federal appeals courts in San Francisco, California, and Richmond, Virginia, will hear arguments this week on whether the latest iteration of the policy is lawful.
The Supreme Court noted it expects those courts to reach decisions “with appropriate dispatch”.
The case will eventually end up back in the Supreme Court.
Monday’s decision suggests America’s top judicial body may ultimately rule in favor of the administration, say legal analysts.
The US president insisted his ban was necessary for national security and pointed to terrorist attacks in Paris, London, Brussels and Berlin as evidence.
But in striking it down, federal judges have cited Mr Trump’s campaign description of his policy as a “Muslim ban” and his call for “a total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States”.
Lower courts across the US have said the president’s policy violated the first amendment of the US constitution covering freedom of religion.