The ban affects real people. Read their stories here. If you have a story to share, please contact us.
AzaDEH Fattahi, DEPARTMENT OF PHYSICS, UNIVERSITY OF VICTORIA, CANADA
I am an Iranian student finishing my PhD in the field of Astrophysics at the University of Victoria, and have been applying for postdoctoral research positions in the US and Europe. I have a job offer from an American university with the addition of two shortlisted positions in prestigious universities. I cannot think about any of those positions now, since I do not know whether I will be able to get a visa and start a position this summer in the US.
I am also invited to give seminars at two American universities in the next two months. I have to cancel my talks due to the current travel ban. I am at the beginning of my scientific career. Missing all these talks and job opportunities come with a huge personal cost. Besides, losing a basic right to travel to a country as a peaceful individual hurts.
Ghassem GOZALIASL, DEPARTMENT oF PHYSICS, UNIVERSITY OF HELSINKI, FinLAND
I am an Iranian Astronomer at the University of Helsinki in Finland. Together with my colleagues, I have identified a sample of potential high-redshift X-ray galaxy group candidates. In order to confirm their identification, we need to follow up them spectroscopically. Our proposal for time at the Keck Telescope on Hawaii to observe these groups was accepted in December 2016 and the observations are scheduled for one night in February 2017. In order to perform the observing run I must be in Hawaii in the last week of February, so I applied for a US visa immediately. While getting a visa for the US was always a challenge, the immigration ban has destroyed all hopes of travelling to Hawaii and carry out my work.
Ehsan MORAVVEJI, INSTITUTE OF ASTRONOMY, KU LEUVEN, BELGIUM
I am an Iranian Astronomer at KU Leuven in Belgium. I have been invited to give an oral presentation in one of the most prestigious massive star conferences in the world, taking place at the Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics, University of California Santa Barbara.
However, the new visa regulation bans me from entering US, to participate in the conference, to give my talk, and enjoy one of the basic privileges that billions of other people on this planet have. This racial discrimination hurts badly, especially when I am accused of being a security threat against the US.
Ahmed Elagali, International Centre for Radio Astronomy Research, University of Western Australia, Australia.
I am a first year PhD student in Astrophysics, at the University of Western Australia. I am from Sudan, which means I can not participate in conferences/workshops in the US. At this early stage of my career, I need to attend as many conferences as possible to both increase my knowledge in the field and build my connections with other researchers around the globe.
This ban may inconvenience my training, as considerable fraction of the astronomical community is based in the US, and I might even be unable to apply for postdoc positions if this ban continues. It is clear that this ban is negatively affecting many people who have done nothing wrong and don't deserve to be treated this way! Not to mention that it is extremely hateful, and a pure form of racial discrimination.