(OKLAHOMA CITY, OK, 11/8/12) — The Oklahoma chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-OK) today said that a Muslim citizen and military veteran who is currently stranded overseas apparently because he has been placed on the government's no-fly list was again barred from a flight to return to Oklahoma to visit his terminally-ill mother.
Saadiq Long was unable to board his November 8 flight leaving Qatar to return to the United States. When Long arrived at the airport, he was denied a boarding pass by KLM airlines and told to follow up with the American embassy. Those were the same instructions provided to Long in April, and he is still waiting for a reply from U.S. officials. Long will now re-book his ticket to make yet another attempt to fly back to the United States before the Thanksgiving holiday.
“It is frustrating that after six months and no response from the Department of Homeland Security that they still will not allow me to fly back to my own country,” said Long.
“No US citizen should be denied the right to return to his or her own country,” said CAIR-OK Executive Director Adam Soltani. “Saadiq Long is an American-born, U.S. Air force veteran and there is no excuse for denying him the right to visit his terminally ill mother.”
CAIR, a Washington-based Muslim civil rights organization, has dealt with a number of similar cases nationwide in which Muslim citizens are prevented from returning to the United States or faced government coercion when seeking to return home.
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CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.
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CONTACT: CAIR-OK Executive Director Adam Soltani, 405-248-5853, firstname.lastname@example.org; CAIR-OK Operations Coordinator Jenell Mapp-Maynard, 405-415-6851, email@example.com; CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-744-7726, firstname.lastname@example.org