Iranian-American Bride's Family May be Banned From Attending California Wedding

The bride lives in Orange County, but her family comes from Iran

A San Diego couple's dream wedding is marked by uncertainity after President Donald Trump's immigration executive order, which may block the bride's Iranian-born family from entering the U.S.  

The bride, Nassim Alisobhani, an Iranian-American Muslim, and her Jewish fiancé thought figuring out how to combine each family’s religious traditions into their wedding would be the hardest part. But after inviting more than 400 guests and finding the perfect venue, it’s likely nearly one-third of Alisobhani and her fiancé’s guests - Alisobhani’s family - may be banned from coming.

“Everything is so uncertain right now,” she told NBC San Diego.

On Friday, President Trump signed an executive order temporarily banning travel from Iran and six other majority-Muslim countries, as well as temporarily suspending the U.S. refugee program.

But as Alisobhani and her fiancé learned, the ban extends far beyond those who live in the seven countries named in the order. 

The vast majority of Alisobhani's family who are barred from attending—all but one—live abroad in Europe and Canada, she said. They will nonetheless be blocked from entering the U.S. because they were born in Iran. 

“It's heartbreaking,” Alisobhani said. “Part of the reason I wanted a huge wedding was so all of my family could be together … My mom came here in 1977 and her siblings haven't been in one place since she left Iran.”

At her mother’s wedding in 1986 almost none of her family was able to attend for the same reason. Alisobhani sees her wedding as the family's chance at a do-over.

“I think it's more certain that they are not coming than them coming, which is just devastating,” she says emotionally.

They tried to prepare for stricter rules: Members of her family who didn't have green cards applied for visas, Alisobhani said.

“Now, they just halted it completely,” she said. “I don't know what's going to happen.”

The new ban, she explained, is part of a stigma her family has tried to shed for years. “Most of them left Iran as a result of the revolution and so to basically to be tied back to this regime is just so heartbreaking because it's just not fair to them.”

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