Outcry After US Blocks British Muslim Family from Disneyland Vacation

British Muslims—including a family of 11 headed to Disneyland—are increasingly being barred from the U.S. without explanation, according to critics in the UK, who are calling on Prime Minister David Cameron to step in and address the problem. 

Despite the family having been granted travel authorization online ahead of their planned December 15 flight to Los Angeles, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security refused to allow them to board the plane at London’s Gatwick Airport. No one has told them why they were prevented from traveling.

But Mohammad Tariq Mahmood, one of the family members, told the Guardian that the reason was “obvious.”

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“It’s because of the attacks on America,” he said. “They think every Muslim poses a threat.”

Mahmood’s comments echo those of prominent British imam Ajmal Masroor, who reportedly had his U.S. visa revoked on December 17 just after checking in for a Virgin Atlantic flight at Heathrow Airport.

In a Facebook post, Masroor said he had been made aware of at least 10 other similar cases, but that those affected were “very afraid they’ll never be able to visit America again” if they speak publicly about the issue.

He said he believed Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump’s anti-Muslim statements were poisoning the U.S.’s approach to followers of the religion. “Trump’s rhetoric is dangerous,” Masroor wrote, “and is influencing foreign affairs between the U.S. and other countries.”

“If America is going to develop zero Muslim tolerance, it’s a very worrying disposition,” Masroor continued. “Muslims are not responsible for all the atrocities in the world. I would tell Barack Obama, if he were here, that it’s about being fair.”

For Mahmood, whose family was denied their trip to Disneyland, fairness—or the lack thereof—was also in question.