Saturday 16 November 2019

Iranian families, students hit by US entry ban are waiting at Schiphol

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Dutch airline KLM on Sunday again refused to fly passengers from seven Muslim countries who were heading for the US because of US president Donald Trump’s entry ban.

The airline was unwilling to say how many people have now been refused, but DutchNews.nl has been contacted by a group of people who are still at Schiphol because they are unable to complete their journey.

One person told DutchNews.nl he is a Phd student who was heading to the University of Minnesota to carry out research. He and another Phd student are now camped out in the transit lounge at Schiphol awaiting a flight back to Iran on January 31.

‘They have just told us we cannot continue our journey. They wanted to change our return flight to January 29 but we were able to convince them to move it until January 31. I’m hopeful this will be fixed so I can continue,’ the student whose name is known to DutchNews.nl, said.

The group of six were all unwilling to use their names as they were afraid it would negatively affect their chances to continue to the United States.

Six people on the flight from Iran which arrived at Schiphol on Saturday morning were affected, student said. The other four are two couples who were going to visit their daughters who live in the US.

‘We heard that some people in other airports were being allowed into the US. So why not us?’ asked the other student.

The new visa regulations have resulted in a number of court cases and the procedure for entering the US for people holding passports from the seven countries remains unclear.

Dual nationals

The Netherlands and Germany have both asked their embassies in Washington to find out what the consequences of US president Donald Trump’s entry ban for people from seven Muslim countries are for dual nationals.

‘We have agreed to protect the rights of our citizens and will discuss at an EU level what needs to be done,’ foreign minister Bert Koenders and Germany’s Sigmar Gabriel said in a joint statement.

As yet it is unclear if people with Dutch nationality who originate from one of the seven countries on the banned list are affected.

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