Washington, Dec 12: US President Donald Trump has said America must “fix” its immigration system following a bomb attack in New York City, which has left at least four people injured.
Trump called on Congress to revise the country’s chain migration policy, which allows immigrants to sponsor other relatives’ entry into the US, in a White House statement.
“Today’s terror suspect entered our country through extended-family chain migration, which is incompatible with national security,” he said.
“America must fix its lax immigration system, which allows far too many dangerous, inadequately vetted people to access our country.”
Trump also pleaded for US lawmakers to increase the country’s number of immigration officers, enhance officers’ powers relating to arrest and detention and “end fraud and abuse in our immigration system”.
“Those convicted of engaging in acts of terror deserve the strongest penalty allowed by law, including the death penalty in appropriate cases,” he added.
The US Supreme Court granted permission for President Trump’s administration to fully enforce the third version of a controversial travel ban prohibiting people from six Muslim-majority countries from entering the country on December 4.
The suspect in Monday’s attack, 27-year-old Akayed Ullah, relocated to the US from Bangladesh in 2011.
According to authorities, he entered the country on an F43 visa issued on the basis he has a family connection to an American citizen.
The Department of Homeland Security has confirmed he is a legal, permanent resident of the US.
Ullah is alleged to have carried out the attack using an improvised low-tech explosive device strapped to his body.
An NYPD spokesman told Al Jazeera that the explosion occurred in the area of the Port Authority Bus Terminal, near 42nd Street and 8th Avenue, which is also close to Times Square.
Three bystanders, and the suspect, suffered non-life-threatening injuries from the blast, officials have said.
Bangladesh’s embassy in Washington, DC has condemned the assault.
“[The] Government of Bangladesh is committed to its declared policy of ‘Zero Tolerance’ against terrorism,” the embassy said in a statement on Monday.
“A terrorist is a terrorist irrespective of his or her ethnicity or religion, and must be brought to justice.”
Police are yet to comment on the suspect’s motive and have announced they will be conducting a full investigation into the explosion, which was also caught on CCTV.