CUNY Graduate Student, Stranded in Iran after Trump Travel Ban, Returns to the United States

A CUNY graduate student from Iran is back in the United States after being denied entry in the wake of the travel ban.

Saira Rafiee, 30, arrived at Logan International Airport in Boston on Saturday morning.

She left Tehran last week, but was not allowed to fly to New York from Abu Dhabi.

Rafiee says she and 11 other Iranians were detained for nearly 18 hours before being sent back home.

CUNY Citizenship Now! attorney Isabel Bucaram told NY1 on Saturday night that family and  friends greeted Raifee when she arrived, and she is in good spirits.

"She was bit overwhelmed of their support. She was soft-spoken, and this is still something of a shock for her and others like her, when they finally do arrive," Bucaram said in a phone interview with NY1. "It was lovely to see her. It was a good hug that we had."

Dozens of CUNY students and staffers rallied outside Brooklyn federal court Monday in her support.

A spokesperson for the university released a statement, saying in part:

"While the executive order's long-term repercussions on the academy remain cause for concern, today we take a brief moment to celebrate and very much look forward to welcoming Ms. Rafiee back to campus."

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