An Ohio couple say they had a wonderful trip to Paris to celebrate their 10th anniversary—but the experience was ruined when they were kicked off their flight home for being Muslim. Faisal and Nazia Ali say they were ordered off the July 26 Delta Air Lines flight and were told that a flight attendant was not comfortable having them on the plane, the Cincinnati Enquirer reports. Nazia Ali says she believes that was because of their appearance—she wears a headscarf—and because the attendant may have heard one of them say "Allah." The Alis, American citizens of Pakistani descent, had to wait 24 hours for the next Delta flight, delaying their reunion with their three sons, ages 5, 4, and 2.
The couple, who were briefly questioned by French police, say they were humiliated. The Council on American-Islamic Relations has filed a complaint with federal authorities, accusing the airline of religious profiling. Local director Karen Karen Dabdoub says these kinds of incidents spike during election years. "There are some politicians who will try to climb that ladder of success on the backs of American-Muslims," she tells the Enquirer. "These types of incidents are happening all across the country all too frequently. It is another symptom of the anti-Muslim behavior we see during the election season." WCPO reports that Delta is investigating the incident and will give the couple a full refund.