Kuwaiti tourists recount unpleasant experiences at Euro borders
KUWAIT CITY, Aug 27: Kuwaiti tourists have formed the focus of a warning report published by the Financial Times recently, in which it monitored the rise of suspicious racial practices against Middle Eastern immigrants, especially non-white skinned people when they pass security checkpoints at border crossings of the Schengen region which includes 26 European countries, reports Al-Rai daily.
At the beginning of the report, a Kuwaiti tourist identified only as Fahad and his family were quoted as saying: “This usually happens.” “The security checkpoints became part of Fahd’s annual summer vacation as he drove through mountains with snow-capped peaks in southern Bavaria,” the report said, adding that Fahd, a father of three, was with his wife in their silver colored family car when Border Police officers stopped them in the quiet town of Kiefersfelden.
The report went on to describe how Fahd and his family “did not pass the mark” from the security point as they did in previous years, but “had to wait more than half an hour until they were granted permission to pass from Austria into Germany.”
The report cited another young Kuwaiti woman, identified only as Uruj, saying she and her husband and their little daughter had to wait for about an hour in their car under the pretext that their daughter did not have a child seat, even though they had valid visas. “I think they did not like our skin color,” the report quoted the veiled Kuwaiti tourist as saying after being allowed to cross into Germany.
The report also noted that most of the people who were stopped, interrogated and searched at Kiefersfelden were tourists traveling in luxury and expensive family cars and from the Gulf countries. To illustrate the extent of the phenomenon of racial suspicion, the author of the report explained, “During the three hours spent at that security point, we noticed 70 percent of those who were stopped, searched and interrogated were of non-white skin.”
The Kuwaiti tourist Fahd was one of the few with a beard, while the other were veiled women and travelers just because they appeared non-white. All of them were parked on the side of the road as soon as they arrived and their luggage and rear trunk of the car were searched