The Council on American-Islamic Relations is investigating the detention of a Muslim British citizen at Los Angeles International Airport, the organization announced today.

Rashid Ahmed Esakjee, 57, was detained Thursday when he arrived at LAX with four other family members. Less than 24 hours later, he was sent back to the United Kingdom, according to CAIR representatives.

“My father is a hard-working man and a respectable member of his community,” Rashida Esakjee, who lives in California, said in a statement released by CAIR.

“He just came to see his grandchildren, but unfortunately was deprived of that opportunity,” she said. “We want to know why my father, a law-abiding citizen, was treated this way.”

Members of the Greater Los Angeles chapter of CAIR are calling for an explanation.

“We call on the government agencies involved to explain why Mr. Esakjee was barred from entering the United States without any explanation,” said CAIR-LA civil rights coordinator Affad Shaikh. “These types of incidents may be perceived as discriminatory and have the potential to further damage our nation’s image in Europe and the Muslim world,” Shaikh said.


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