- Associated Press - Sunday, January 29, 2017

ST. LOUIS (AP) - Large crowds gathered at Missouri airports on Sunday to protest President Donald Trump’s suspension of refugee entry into the U.S.

Hundreds of protests rallied peacefully at the St. Louis area’s largest airport. Officials at Lambert-St. Louis International Airport decided not to limit the number of protesters, but they requested that demonstrators remain outside the Terminal 1 building, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.

Across the state, hundreds of people also gathered at Kansas City International Airport, with many chanting: “Say it loud, say it clear: Refugees are welcome here!” Airport officials said they were aware of the protest but didn’t issue any further statement.

Trump’s executive order temporarily bars citizens of seven predominantly Muslim countries from entering the U.S. The order has sparked protests around the country.

The American Civil Liberties Union filed a federal lawsuit earlier in the day challenging the St. Louis airport’s restrictions on demonstrations. No hearing was immediately set, but ACLU lawyer Anthony Rothert said that after watching the peaceful protest for more than an hour, he doesn’t think a judge will need to hold one.

“We have had lots of protests in the past, and we always work with the people,” said Rhonda Hamm-Niebruegge, the airport’s director. “We have had sort of the standard that says 50 at a time, and that’s mainly not to obstruct.

“Obviously we knew this group was going to be larger, and it was going to be harder to contain, so our focus was to work with everybody.”

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Information from: St. Louis Post-Dispatch, http://www.stltoday.com

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