The central African country’s inclusion on the revised list, which prevents almost all travel for its citizens to the US, has been causing confusion

It is fair to say that one of the more infrequently asked geopolitical questions of recent decades has been: “Why Chad?” The large, poor African country has rarely played even a marginal role in international power politics. Its inclusion on a newly revised list of eight countries whose citizens are subjected to an indefinite ban on almost all travel to the US has led to some bewilderment. ​

The addition of other states on to Donald Trump’s list, which will come into effect on 18 October, appear more easily explained. Trump has been trading threats and insults for weeks with North Korea’s Kim Jong-un, while the US president told the UN last week that Venezuela was a “socialist dictatorship”. Sudan has disappeared from the list, while Iraq has apparently been deemed a problem that can be dealt with in other ways. Somalia, Libya, Syria, Yemen and Iran were on the original list and remain on the new one.

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