Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Our pause in Cairo Airport

We have been stuck in Cairo airport for nearly a day now. We are neither being allowed entry or exit by Egyptian authorities, who insist that as long as Rafah Crossing is closed, they are under strict orders not to allow Palestinians in.

This is despite a signed letter of consent I received personally from the Egyptian consul-general in Washington the day of my travel from the US.

To quote the Egyptian officials here in the airport "so sue him".

I tried to plead that it was not my fault Egypt was in the way of my home- that if I could,I'd parachute in; that i simply wanted to go back home.

For now, we wait and sleep on the roach ridden floors of the transit hall as our own "Borders" film (a classic Syrian satire by iconic actor Dreid La7am about a man who is stuck between the borders of two fictional countries who speak the same language) unfolds.

We cannot return to the US b/c my visa has expired and I was planning on renewing it in Beirut where I was to meet up with Yassine after my Gaza stay.

And we are not beig allowed entry to Cairo because Rafah is closed.

No one seems to have an answer, other than whast was told to me this morning. No one knows where my file is or what is going to happen. I have an off again on again wifi signal, and tryig my best to keep updates on twitter @gazamom.

The only certainty is uncertainty.


Blogger guanacux said...

Praying for you!

8:53 PM  
Blogger Leyla Benkirane said...

Laila , ALL i want to say im so sorry that you are in this horrible situation . wow , you are on a friendly Muslim arab land and you get to be treated like this . im sure if Britain was on the way to Gaza , you would be better treated. I dont know what to say. I Hope the Egyptian change their mind before you run out of money . im so sorry again . please keep us informed . wishing you all the best .

9:03 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

This shows addai ne7na el 3arab min7ib ba3idna!

Best of luck em Yousuf, hang in there, inshAllah things will work out soon and you'll enter Gaza.

11:45 PM  
Blogger Rod Cox said...

Please stay in touch. From a mother and journalist in England. Friend of Rod Cox.

In solidarity.
Frances (and family)

12:36 AM  
Blogger Hana said...

Stay strong Laila, Inshallah tufraj soon, it's a shame what egypt does.
Is there any way to start a petition or calling campaign, or has one already been started?
Please let us know what we can do to help.

6:14 AM  
Blogger Clare said...

You are so brave. I admire you so much.

7:43 AM  
Blogger Amina_Akoo said...


(I'm new here...)

Definitely praying for you. It's not much of a shock that Egypt has done that. Insha'allah things will work out...


7:28 PM  
Blogger Miss Two said...

Salaamu ALaikum,
Making dua'a for you- I've put it on facebook and now I'm checking your twitter.

At least you are safe alHamdulillah, or relatively so. Thank you for keeping us posted!

7:29 PM  
Blogger nuria utrilla said...


Praying that this dreadful ordeal will soon be over for you and your little ones. How shameful! Please send a dispatch to your anxious audience as soon as you can.
We are worried for you.


3:40 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

All I can is : HASBONA ALLAH WA NE3MA ALWAKEEL. Now you are back in USA with your husband,children and brothers just turn that page and be assurred that even if you forget Allah will not.

9:18 AM  
Blogger Halla said...

that is unfriggin believable!! What do they expect you to do???

8:00 PM  
Blogger Nasser Saleh said...

Hi Laila
I hope you feel better when you got back to the US , I followed the news on your Twitter .. All the support from all of us ..

6:36 AM  
Blogger Hoots said...

Via Helena Cobban and The Arabist your Twitter messages have been linked beyond Twitterland.

I put together a post using your tweets. Plain old blogging is easier (and more readable), but I think of the time I spent as a kind of rosary meditation on the tragedy of your situation. Your "home for the holidays" saga gone wrong symbolizes the plight of Palestinians everywhere.

3:50 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well this is very interesting indeed.Would love to read a little more of this. Great post. Thanks for the heads-up

1:02 PM  
Blogger Adrikna Ya Mahdi said...

Hey, i just opened a new blog & it's about the truth on the war with arab countries. We are also trying to stop people believing the media & show who is the bad & who is the good. So i was thinking of being partners & help each other out. I would appreciate if you can reply. Also keep the good work on this site. Peace

1:34 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

glad your home safe girl

If you want to catch up ive moved my site to here

take care love


2:04 PM  

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