U.S. Travel Ban: Moorhead Family’s Relatives Detained in Turkey

The sister of a Moorhead woman coming as a refugee is being detained in Turkey

MOORHEAD, Minn. — A Moorhead woman is waiting for her sister and niece to arrive from Turkey after they are caught up in President Trump’s travel ban that is currently being decided by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

They’re coming as refugees from Iraq, originally set to arrive on Monday.

It’s been the subject of protests and rallies for weeks.

The effects of Trump’s temporary ban on refugees are now being felt here in the Red River Valley.

Officials with Lutheran Social Services say Anaam Al-ani and her daughter were detained in Turkey on their way here.

Al-ani’s sister Shahlaa Mohammed is concerned about one thing: getting her sister and niece to their new home.

“I want her to be able to come here because I know that over here, we have very kind and welcoming people,” said Shahlaa. “I want them to come here so they can live a normal life.”

“She is only a single mom,” said Luqman Mohammed, Shahlaa’s husband. “There is no one to help her over there. In the middle east, it is especially hard to be a single mom. I hope when she comes here, she can see her daughter go to school, that she lives in a more comfortable future and just live like we do.”

(Natali Botrus was our interpreter for the interview with the Mohammed family. When watching the video, please keep in mind, these are rough translations. But they should properly convey what they are saying according to Botrus.)

The Mohammeds both told us they were worried about something like this happening when the new president was elected.

“We know the president has to save this country. We are fine with that,” said Shahlaa. “We are only upset because we want them here. We hope that in the future, everything will be resolved and the family will come to this country,”

They hope the politics behind it all change.

The Mohammed family says Fargo-Moorhead is a welcoming place.

Even though it’s colder than their home country, they like living here.

“Fargo-Moorhead is a quiet and small place,” said Shahlaa. “The people over here are kind, they are welcoming. They help us learn English, work and do the right thing. We think Fargo-Moorhead is better than the bigger cities. We would get lost if we went there.”

Because of a judge’s temporary halt to the executive order, Anaam Al-ani and her child will make it to Fargo.

A family re-uniting in a new place to call home.

Anaam Al-ani and her daughter are set to arrive at Hector International Airport next week.

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