Los Banos family stranded because of immigration order left with few options

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Ahmed Ali is a US citizen but his 12-year-old daughter has a valid visa and a Yemeni passport. The two are now stranded at a Djibouti hotel, waiting and hoping for any change that might bring them home. (KFSN)

President Trump's executive order restricting travel and immigration from seven Muslim-majority countries received a fresh wave of legal and political challenges Monday after a tumultuous weekend in which protesters took to the streets in many American cities to voice their dissent.

Democrats sought to take advantage of the opposition by pushing legislation to undo the executive action.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said this morning that he would call for a vote on bills that would rescind the executive order.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California outlined what such legislation would accomplish: rescind the order, ensure congressional oversight of Trump's authority to bar people from entering the U.S. and require the president to respond to questions about the rationale for barring certain classes of foreign nationals.

One of those not allowed back into the country is the daughter of a man who works at a Los Banos convenience store. Cameryno Munoz says Ahmed Ali left several weeks ago to pick up his daughter from Yemen.

"He was very excited to get her back," Munoz said.

Ali says his daughter got her visa on Thursday, and their flight to come back to the states was scheduled for Saturday - just a day after President Trump signed the executive order banning entry and travel to citizens from seven Muslim-majority countries.

Now he and his daughter are stuck in Djibouti after Ali was told his daughter couldn't board the flight.

"What could we do," Ali said. "We got stuck in the middle of everything."

His attorney says they've been working to get his daughter a visa since 2011, and Ali and his daughter are now at a hotel waiting and hoping for any change.

"It's certainly heart-wrenching for all of us," family attorney Stacey Gartland said. "And we're doing everything we can to bring this family back together."

Gartland says they're now working to obtain a waiver for the child that would allow her to board the flight.

"Obviously this 12-year-old is not going to be a terrorist," she said. "She has US citizen parents and two US citizen siblings. They've gone through an extensive vetting process to get this visa."

Representative Jim Costa made a statement saying, "My office is doing everything within our jurisdiction to help Mr. Ali and his daughter to get home as soon as possible and safely."

Munoz says he's tried to help the coworker he considers family any way he can, and he's been able to send him some money.

"He's been waiting seven years to bring his daughter and he can do nothing," he said.

He just hopes Ali and his daughter will be able to return and reunite with the rest of their family in Los Banos.
Related Topics:
newsmerced countyimmigrationdonald trumpLos Banos
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