Concerns that US border patrol agents are targeting minorities have grown in the wake of Donald Trump’s executive order blocking refugees and visitors from seven Muslim-majority countries from entry into the US.
The order caused chaos at US ports of entry when it was enacted two weeks ago and though a federal court has blocked it from being enforced, claims of aggressive, and potentially illegal, treatment have lingered.
This week, Canadian citizen Fadwa Alaoui said she was denied entry to the US after border officials asked probing questions about her Muslim faith and her views on Trump.
Alaoui was born in Morocco but has lived in Canada for more than 20 years, traveling to the US regularly to visit family. But on her way to Vermont for a day of shopping with two of her children and an adult cousin, she was stopped for four hours at the border.
Alaoui – who wears a hijab – said border officials asked her several questions about her faith. “He said ‘Do you practice? Which mosque do you go to? What is the name of the imam? How often do you go to the mosque? What kind of discussions do you hear in the mosque? Does the imam talk to you directly?’”
She said they also examined her phone and asked questions about Arabic videos on the device. Alaoui told them they were videos of daily prayers she had received from friends, to help her and her son as he went through chemo. An agent later explained that the videos were why she was being blocked from entry.
“I felt humiliated, treated as if I was less than nothing. It’s as if I wasn’t Canadian,” she told the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.
READ MORE HERE: https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/feb/10/canadian-muslim-us-border-questioning