David Cameron should challenge the US after a British Muslim family was stopped from boarding a flight to the country where they hoped to visit Disneyland, according to their Labour MP.
Mohammad Tariq Mahmood, was travelling from Gatwick to Los Angeles with his brother and nine of their children aged between eight and 19 when they were approached by officials from US Homeland Security as they queued in the departure lounge.
Without offering any explanation, they were told their authorisation to board the December 15 flight had been revoked despite the fact that they had been granted travel authorisation online a few weeks earlier.
“It’s because of the attacks on America,” he told The Guardian. “They think every Muslim poses a threat.”
The children were devastated not to be able to visit their cousins in southern California and go to Disneyland and Universal Studios, he added.
After being forced to return the duty free they had bought, the family were escorted from the airport, which Mr Mahmood said was one of the most embarrassing moments of his life.
Worse still, Mr Mahmood and his brother Mohammad Zahid Mahmood, have been told by their airline that the £9,000 cost of their flights, which they had saved for months for, will not be refunded.
Having “hit a brick wall” with her own attempts to get answers for her constituent from the US Embassy, Stella Creasy, the Labour MP for Walthamstow, has written to the prime minister to press American officials for answers.
She has also asked for clarification on whether Britain monitors the numbers and ethnic and religious background of those who are blocked from travelling.
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