LONDON, United Kingdom — Prime Minister David Cameron’s office says he will investigate a lawmaker’s claim that U.S. officials prevented a British Muslim family from flying to Disneyland for a planned holiday.
Stella Creasy, a member of the opposition Labour Party, says U.S. officials gave no explanation for refusing to allow her constituents to board a flight from Gatwick Airport on Dec. 15.
She told the British newspaper The Guardian that this is part of a larger pattern affecting British Muslims, and that a lack of information from U.S. officials is sparking resentment among Muslims who feel discriminated against.
The issue is sensitive in part because U.S. presidential contender Donald Trump has called for a temporary ban on Muslims visiting the U.S. due to concerns about extremist attacks.
“It’s because of the attacks on America. They think every Muslim poses a threat,” Mohammad Tariq Mahmood, who was one of the family prevented from boarding his flight, told The Guardian.
He went on to explain how the children in the group had been counting down the days until they would be able to see their extended family in southern California and visit Disneyland and Universal Studios.
Mahmood and his brother were told by the airline they were to travel with that they would not be refunded the 9,000 pound cost of their flights, and the family was forced to return items they had purchased from the airport’s duty-free shops before they were escorted from the premises, according to the British paper.
“I have never been more embarrassed in my life,” Mahmood told The Guardian. “I work here. I have a business here. But we were alienated.”
Creasy’s office told The Associated Press Wednesday that she had written to Cameron seeking his intervention.
She complained that U.S. officials who kept the family from boarding provided no information and complained she had hit “a brick wall” seeking information about the case.
Creasy told the prime minister there is “growing fear” among British Muslims that aspects of Trump’s plans are coming into practice even though they have been widely condemned.
She warned that some Muslims believe the public condemnation of Trump’s position “contrasts with what is going on in practice.”
Cameron’s office said he would look into the matter.
He had earlier characterized Trump’s policy as “divisive and wrong.”
U.S. Embassy officials declined immediate comment Wednesday.