Local deli owner says he had a hard time traveling back to U.S. - KPTV - FOX 12

Local deli owner says he had a hard time traveling back to U.S. due to travel ban

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Esam Altoblany (KPTV) Esam Altoblany (KPTV)

A local deli owner says he had a hard time traveling back to Portland from Iraq after President Trump signed the executive order on immigration.

Esam Altoblany came to America as a refugee from Iraq. He had a contracting company in Iraq and says he moved his family to America for stability and safety.

Altoblany now owns Ziggurat Deli in Beaverton. He says he went back to Iraq to take care of somethings, including trying to sell the house he owns. 

Altoblany says he is still in the process of getting his green card, and when he heard about the travel ban, he was worried he wouldn't be able to get back to the U.S. He was planning on staying in Iraq for awhile longer but when he heard about the ban, he immediately booked another ticket.

When Altoblany made it to the Dubai airport, he says he was turned away because he didn't have his green card.

Eventually his travel documents were approved but once he landed in Los Angeles International Airport, he faced more problems.

Altoblany says he was questioned by an officer and waited for more than four hours. He says he wasn't detained at LAX, he was just questioned.

The next day Altoblany took a flight from LAX to Portland International Airport.

Altoblany says he was not expecting to have so many problems because of the travel ban, and he was very worried that he wouldn't see his family again. He also says he is now too scared to travel and doesn't plan to do it again.

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