Arab-Israeli couple strip-searched in Greek airport by Israeli security guards

Israeli journalist Sahar Issawi in Jerusalem, May 10, 2018. (photo: Emil Salman / Haaretz)

The couple, a lawyer and a journalist, both Israeli citizens of Arab descent, were asked to present their marriage license before being searched.

By Jack Khoury | Haaretz | Jun 11, 2018


“There were no security considerations here, it was all built on profiling. If you’re an Arab, you’re a suspect.”
— Arab-Israeli journalist, Sahar Issawi


An Arab Israeli couple was asked to present their marriage license before boarding a plane to Israel from Greece on Sunday. The couple also claimed they were subjected to a degrading security check.

Sahar Issawi and her husband, Firas Asali, who were asked for their marriage license by Israeli security personnel before they could board an Israir flight to Israel from Crete.

Issawi, a journalist, and Asali, a lawyer, both Israeli citizens, came to Heraklion Airport in Crete on May 10 for their flight back to Israel.

“When we got to the check-in counter we were greeted by an Israeli security guard, who then called a female security guard to take me so we could be questioned separately,” says Issawi.

The security guard asked her where she lived in Israel and what she did, and she showed her card from the Government Press Office. Then, she said, “The security guard asked me how long I knew my husband, how many times we had traveled together, when, and to where.

“Then she surprised me by asking if I had my marriage license with me. I said, ‘Seriously? Does anyone travel with their marriage license?’” Isawi said, adding that her husband was asked similar questions.

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