The travel ban issued under President Trump has caused a lot of chaos for people trying to get to the United States, especially those who are in the country temporarily for a visit. What is worse are the poor people coming to the States for medical reasons. One mother from Yemen is getting some help from the State Department in a trying time.
Shaima Swileh was one of those unfortunate souls. She is the mother to 2-year-old Abdullah Hassan. the boy is in a Calfornia hospital with what doctors are saying is a rare genetic Brain condition. The condition doesn’t bode well for the young boy as he is looked after by his father, Ali Hassan.
The boy and his father are U.S.Citizens but Shaima is from Yemen and living in Egypt. Under the travel ban to enter the United States, Those from Yemen are not allowed to enter America so by those rules Shaima was not allowed to come to the United States to visit her son as he lay in the hospital. Both parents pleaded to have something done so that the mother would be there to visit her son in this terrible times.
The news came Tuesday morning that the U.S. State Department stepped in. They granted Shaima a waiver to get into the country and see Abdullah and possibly say goodbye to the boy. The whole scenario was heartwrenching enough with time running out on Abdullah, but it was made even worse as his mother was not allowed to see him under the travel ban.
Abdullah is currently on a ventilator in San Francisco’s Benioff Children’s Hospital Oakland. He has been on a ventilator for more than a month. Doctors say that those who have Abdullah’s condition usually don’t live on ventilators for much more than that. Shaima wished to come to the United States and kiss her son and say goodbye before his battle is over.
The travel ban prohibits nationals from several counties from entering the country. It was enacted under the guise of preventing terrorists from entering the United States to carry out terrorist attacks. Yemen is one of those countries targeted in the ban. The State Department, however, can make acceptations if there is “issuance is in the national interest, the applicant poses no national security or public safety threat to the United States, and denial of the visa would cause undue hardship.”
Ali Hassan appeared on American television Tuesday morning and made a plea to President Trump to allow Shaima Swileh to be with her son during this trying time. He said “All families, they’re supposed to be together. Right now, with my son’s situation, he’s facing death. I’m going through losing my son. It’s really hard for me and for my mother and for my family and my wife, too. It’s just really hard.”
Soon after his appearance, the order was granted by the State Department to make the exception and Shaima will be allowed to come to American under an I-130 visa. There are types of visas granted to close relatives of American Citizens. Word was that she was soon packed and waiting on a plane in Egpyt and was coming to see her soon on the earliest flight she could get.
There was no official comment from the State Department itself over the emergency granting of the visa, but to Abdullah’s parents, I’m not sure they really care about the State Department’s response as long as Shaima Swileh will be able to see her son and personally say goodbye to him before his story ends.