Prime Minister David Cameron has confirmed he will look into why a British Muslim family was prevented from boarding a flight to the US. The incident occurred on December 15 at London's Gatwick airport.
Mohammad Tariq Mahmood was traveling with his brother and nine of their children last week when officials stopped them from getting on to a plane headed for the US. Speaking to the Guardian newspaper, Mahmood said he believed it was because US officials thought "every Muslim poses a threat."
"Because I have a beard and sometimes wear Islamic dress, I get stopped and asked questions," Mahmood told British media, adding that his family was also unable to get a refund for the flights. They spent around 9,000 pounds (12,000 euros).
Stella Creasy, a member of the Labour Party working in Mahmood's Walthamstow, London constituency, told the Guardian that the incident was part of a larger pattern affecting British Muslims. "Online and offline discussions reverberate with the growing fear that UK Muslims are being 'trumped' - that widespread condemnation of Donald Trump's call for no Muslim to be allowed into America contrasts with what is going on in practice," Creasy wrote.
Her office had meanwhile written to the prime minister seeking his intervention in the matter, the Associated Press reported. Officials who had detained the family had also refused to comment, she said, saying she had hit a "brick wall" seeking information about the case.
"We should do more than shrug our shoulders at secretive American security policies that leave our constituents in such limbo," she said.
Neither the US embassy in London nor the British Home Office have issued any statements in this regard.
mg/jm (AFP, AP)