Family Reunited, Mostly


They had to travel through Jordan and spend an additional $15,000. But, finally a Lakeland family was reunited Friday, mostly.

Six of the seven children of the Yacoub family flew home after being stranded in the West Bank for more than two weeks.

In June, the Yacoubs traveled to the West Bank through Tel Aviv's Ben Gurion Airport to visit with family and celebrate their two oldest sons' getting married. But when they tried to return home through the same airport in August, 22-year-old Ibrahim Yacoub said Israeli officials would let only his motherand three youngest siblings return.

'We were treated differently after they found out that my father has a Palestinian passport. But when we first came through, it was 'Hi, how are you doing?', treating us nice. But as soon as they found out we were Palestinians, the whole thing changed.'

Although the parents and all their children are American citizens, Israeli officials told them they would be treated as Palestinian residents because of their father's heritage.

The Israeli law that delayed the family mandated that those who were detained get Palestinian IDs meaning Israel will no longer recognize their US Citizenship.

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