SAN FRANCISCO INT’L AIRPORT (KCBS) – Some legal residents of the United States, who are citizens of one of the countries on President Donald Trump’s travel ban list, are afraid they won’t get back in if they leave the country.
Oakland immigration attorney Banafsheh Akhlagi said she’s swamped with phone calls from Iranian, or Libyan, or Syrian Americans, who want to know if it’s safe to go see family, or take an international business trip.
“It’s heartbreaking to even have those conversations,” Akhlagi told KCBS.
Akhlagi is telling those seeking her advice, better not to risk it.
“If they are under a valid visa, I tell them to stay put. If they have a green card, I say to them, ‘Note that there might be a possibility at the port of entry on your return,’” she said.
Akhlaghi said the refugee and travel ban has left far more people in limbo than the administration admits and is hurting local businesses and universities.
The attorney was fielding calls from some of them…while at SFO…waiting for an Iranian-American client who’d just landed from Dubai…and was finally released after three hours of interrogation.
“This is blatant human rights violations, these are blatant civil rights violations and it is really a black eye for the United States,” Akhlaghi said.