Iranian Doctor Working With Boston Children’s Hospital Held At Logan Airport

BOSTON (CBS) — A research doctor from Iran working with Boston Children’s Hospital has been detained at Logan Airport with his family and faces deportation, the hospital confirmed Tuesday afternoon.

“Dr. Dehnavi is a visiting research scholar on a J-1 visa coming to Boston Children’s with his wife and three children,” the hospital said in a statement. “He and his family are being detained at Logan are supposed to be sent back to Iran later today.”

Iran is one of six mostly Muslim countries affected by President Donald Trump’s travel ban, now in effect in most cases after the Supreme Court decided last month to hear arguments on it.

Trita Parsi, head of the National Iranian American Council, said Dr. Dehnavi has been at the airport for over 24 hours with his family–including a 7-month-old baby.

She said he was denied entry after landing at Logan by border officials, who told him he didn’t have all of the documents required to enter the country.

Parsi said the family was confused, because they were allowed to board the plane and fly to Logan.

In a statement, U.S. Customs and Border Protection said they couldn’t discuss individual cases, but noted that a visa doesn’t necessarily guarantee entry.

“All travelers arriving to the United States must possess valid travel documents however, it is important to note that issuance of a visa or a visa waiver does not guarantee entry to the United States,” the statement read. “A CBP officer at the port of entry will conduct an inspection to determine if the individual is eligible for admission under U.S. immigration law.”

They said that travelers have to “overcome ALL grounds of inadmissibility” in order to enter the country.

“INA § 212(a) lists more than 60 grounds of inadmissibility divided into several major categories, including health-related grounds, criminality, security reasons, public charge, labor certification, illegal entrants and immigration violations, documentation requirements, and miscellaneous grounds,” the department said.

The hospital said they don’t know all of the circumstances surrounding his detention, but said they’re committed to helping the doctor and his family.

“Boston Children’s hopes that this situation will be quickly resolved and Dr. Dehnavi and his family will be released and allowed to enter the US,” the statement read.

Parsi said border officials plan to put the doctor and his family on the next available flight back to Iran.

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