A family from Detroit became the latest victim of United States President Donald Trump’s ban on immigration and travel from seven predominately Muslim nations as the mother of a local business owner died as she could not return to the US for treatment.
According to a report by Fox 2, the businessman, Mike Hager, flew to Iraq to bring his mother back home to the US for medical treatment. But he was forced to leave his family behind under President Trump’s ban.
His mother died just a day after being told that she couldn’t return to the United States.
Hager was born in Iraq and fled during the Gulf War. He lived in a refugee camp with his family for four years before settling in the United States. In the 2000s, he returned to Iraq where he worked as a contractor for the US Special Forces between 2003 and 2008 as an interpreter and cultural advisor.
Hager, who now owns a business in Metro Detroit, said that his mom would still be alive if Trump had not instituted his travel ban on Muslim countries.
Hager, along with his family, was returning to the United States where his mother has lived since 1995. As they were waiting in line at the airport in Iraq on Friday, he was told that he could pass through because he was a US citizen. But his family members - including his mom -- weren’t allowed, despite holding green cards.
“They destroyed us. I went with my family, I came back by myself. They destroyed our family,” Hager said.
“The immigration told us that the President of the United States put an order right now -- you guys cannot go,” he said.
Hager said he didn’t expect it to be a problem for the family to travel since they all had green cards and had lived in the United States for 20 years.
Last Friday, Trump signed an executive order that indefinitely barred Syrian refugees from entering the country, suspended all refugee admissions for 120 days and blocked citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries, refugees or otherwise, from entering the United States for 90 days: Iran, Iraq, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen.
The ban has been met with protests and condemnation worldwide.
Image: Hundreds of people attend a rally at Grand Army Plaza in Brooklyn against the US President's travel ban. Photograph: Spencer Platt/Getty Images