The executive order issued by the US president preventing those holding certain nationalities entering the US has caused travel chaos and upset the lives of many. Among them is Dr. Samira Asgari, a scientific researcher at EPFL in Lausanne. On Saturday, while trying to fly to the US, she was told she could not board.
I was pretty excited to join @soumya_boston‘s lab but denied boarding due to my Iranian nationality. Feeling safer?
— Samira Asgari (@samsam_86) January 28, 2017
In a Tweet today, she questions the legality of the situation.
— Samira Asgari (@samsam_86) January 30, 2017
Under the order, all travellers who are nationals of Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen are not allowed to enter the US for 90 days. According to the BBC, the ban applies to those holding more than one nationality. However, the UK foreign office said that only those with multiple nationalities travelling from one of the seven listed countries might be subject to extra checks, and that the executive order does not apply to dual citizens travelling to the US from anywhere other than one of the seven countries listed “regardless of your nationality or your place of birth”
According to the New York Times, Samira Asgari, who was to start a postdoctoral fellowship at Harvard Medical School, was told in Frankfurt that she could not board her flight to Boston. Dr. Asgari, 30, recently completed her Ph.D. at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne (EPFL), Switzerland, and was planning to study the genetic roots of why people respond differently to tuberculosis infections.
She called Harvard to inform them she wouldn’t be coming, before calling her boyfriend, who had resigned from his job to accompany her. From Frankfurt she made her way back to Lausanne, where she had one more day on her lease, said the newspaper.