One Iraqi man free after detainment at JFK Airport

Posted January 31, 2017

Lawyers for two Iraqi refugees, who have been detained at New York's John F. Kennedy airport, have filed a lawsuit in federal court challenging President Donald Trump's executive order that temporarily bans nationals from certain countries, according to several news reports.

Alshawi was already aboard a flight to join his wife and their 7-year-old son in Houston when Trump signed the executive order.

The lawsuit filed early Saturday morning is the first legal challenge to Trump's executive order.

The filing seeks class-action status in order to represent all refugees and travelers held up because of the presidential action.

The petition is included below and is also available here.

One of the men, Hameed Khalid Darweesh, worked with the U.S. government for 10 years after the USA invaded Iraq.

Protests over Trump's new executive order erupted at airports nationwide, including Charlotte Douglas International Airport, where more than 100 people carried signs and chanted Sunday afternoon.

Trump's order also bans admission of refugees from Syria indefinitely, and bars anyone from the countries of Iraq, Syria, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia and Yemen from entering the country for 90 days.

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But, the lawyers from the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) for the two Iraqi men said that it is illegal to detain people with valid visas and the order "violates their Fifth Amendment procedural and substantive due process rights", according to CNN. For years, he risked his life working alongside USA special forces inside Iraq to help American soldiers liberate the country, and he held a press conference on Saturday describing just how much he loves America.

He said both of the men have been specifically targeted in their home country because of their affiliation with the United States, and would be in "serious danger" if they were sent back.

Hirsch said the "special immigrant visa" program is for people from Iraq and Afghanistan who supported US troops as interpreters during the wars.

Retired Naval Officer and author Malcolm Nance tweeted that several Iraqi interpreters who had worked with the US military were denied permits. "He helped interpret, he hooked us up with things that we needed and helped us generally get through the communities that we were operating in in Iraq", Friedman tells Simon. Iran, being one of the seven countries on the list, issued a statement saying that they were going to ban all American travel to their country. In the next hour or two he was released and immediately went to make the rounds of the press.

Shortly after noon, Hameed Khalid Darweesh, an interpreter who worked for more than a decade on behalf of the United States government in Iraq, was released.

"We knew that was coming - we were prepared", said Camille Mackler, a lawyer who heads legal initiatives at the New York Immigration Coalition, one of the groups that quickly mounted the demonstration there.

She was expecting to welcome a Syrian family to Charlotte Monday night.

The trio, an elderly couple and a young woman who all came from the central city of Isfahan, had valid U.S. visas, Peter Thier told the Austria Press Agency. The family of three - a couple and their child - had been scheduled to board a Chicago-bound plane from Amman in Jordan, then take a second flight to Charlotte.