Minneapolis Man Trying Get His Family Back From Somalia

January 31, 2017 06:29 PM

Confusion over President Donald Trump's executive order on immigration is affecting Minnesota families, who are being turned away at international airports as they try to board flights to the United States.

Kamaal Mohamed recorded a cell phone video Tuesday morning at an airport in Somalia.


"It looks like I'm being denied to bring my family along with me," Mohamed said on the tape that was later posted and shared on social media.

Mohamed and his two young sons are legal U.S. citizens who live in Minneapolis, while his wife was recently bumped up to green card status.

"As we were trying to board the plane, we get pulled over," Mohamed said over Skype Tuesday afternoon.

Mohamed said the airline wouldn't allow his wife to travel with them.

"They were telling me that those orders were coming from my country," Mohamed said.

On Saturday, U.S. District Judge Ann Donnelly issued a stay on President Donald Trump's executive order on immigration so that people on their way to the United States would not be deported.

But Mohamud Noor, executive director of the Confederation of Somali Community in Minneapolis said now many families that are trying to travel are being stopped at airports around the world.

"I think they (the airlines) sent me an email saying, 'this is what we've been ordered to follow,' and that order tells them anyone with lawfully permanent residence is not allowed to board any planes coming to the U.S.," Noor said.

Noor believes internationally, airlines and other agencies are following President Trump's executive order to the letter.

Noor said he thinks that is causing a lot of confusion for people with legal permanent residence - like Mohamed's wife.

"I think it will take another executive order which informs everybody this is not what we said in the original order," Noor said.

In the meantime, Mohamed said he will stay in Somalia and try to fight to bring his wife back with him.

"It was very devastating," Mohamed said. "For my wife and my kids, and me it was a very emotional time."


Kirsten Swanson

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