Local Stranded in Bahrain
Ali Ahmed, 20, was placed on the FBI's no-fly list and arrived home Monday.
By Gitzel Puente
NBC San Diego
Jul 9, 2012
Ahmed spent the last two weeks stuck in Bahrain, an island east of Saudi Arabia after government officials placed him on the FBI's no-fly list, meaning he was not permitted to travel in or out of the United States.
"I'm actually allowed to come back home to my family. I had a tough time over there," said Ahmed after arriving at San Diego's International Airport, "Thank you all for the support."
He was supposed to fly to Kenya to visit his father and to get married, but instead he was flown to Bahrain.
Soon after he was denied the flight to Kenya, he contacted San Diego's chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) to seek for help.
The president of the chapter, Hanif Mohebi, says they have been trying to figure out why Ahmed is on the no-fly list.
"Our law enforcement needs to refocus on this list," says Mohebi, "Find out how can we have a list that can keep us secure and safe without violating our civil rights."
Ahmed is a U.S. citizen from Somali descent who escaped the war in Somalia when he was seven-years-old.
He has lived in San Diego since then and has not left the country until this incident.
In the past five months, CAIR has received four calls from Muslim residents complaining about being on the no-fly list.
When Ahmed arrived at the terminal, he looked relieved to be back with his family.
"I'm back home, so I'm very happy," expressed Ahmed.
Reached by NBC 7 for comment, a spokesperson with the FBI said it is their policy not to comment on individuals placed on the no-fly list.
Source: NBC San Diego