DFW Protesters Celebrate Release Of Detainees

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DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Protests at DFW airport reached a fevered pitch Sunday afternoon over President Donald Trump’s travel ban. Then Sunday night nine people detained at DFW airport for well over 24 hours were reunited with family and friends in the United States.

Late Sunday night the international arrivals area was back to normal after protest leaders assured the crowd they were confident the known detainees had been released. But they also insist they’re ready for another fight.

It was a reunion Ali Farmehr worried might not happen. The McKinney man waited hours for his Iranian wife after her plane landed Sunday.

“I’m glad that things worked out for me, and I’m glad that things worked out for other people as well,” said Farmehr.

Throughout the day the massive crowd of protestors celebrated partial victories.

“Because of this sustained pressure, we’ve been able to secure the release of the nine people that we had the names, the list of,” said Imam Omar Suleiman.

But one of the lead attorneys for the detainees announced to supporters that others may still be held.

“We’re not telling anybody to go home. Y’all stay here, invite your friends. We’ll bring more,” said attorney Chris Hamilton.

Then finally, a joint announcement from protest leaders that Customs and Border Protection had given them the information they wanted.

“They have assured us that there are no people that were detained because of the executive order still in custody. As a result we’ve encouraged the families and communities to go home and get some rest,” said Alia Salem with the Council on American Islamic Relations.

But attorneys only learned of Ali Farmehr’s wife after the release of the original nine detainees. That’s why protest leaders say supporters should stand ready to return if they learn of more travelers in jeopardy.

“The most important thing to me as an American of course is the security of America. It’s very important, and I’m sure the president feels that way. And we need to see case by case, but I don’t feel that we should be discriminating against just a nation just because somebody’s from that country,” Farmehr said.

Attorneys who volunteered at DFW say they encourage families to reach out to them right away if there are additional cases of detainees.

(©2017 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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