Iranian-born Gegard Mousasi hopeful to fight at UFC 210 despite Trump’s travel ban

By Newsroom on February 1, 2017
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  • Gegard Mousasi is still expected to fight at UFC 210 in Buffalo but the top-five ranked middleweight has concerns due to President Donald Trump’s immigration ban specific to seven countries in the Middle East.

    While Mousasi’s family moved to Amsterdam when he was a child, the veteran middleweight was born in Iran, which left him worried about traveling to the United States for his upcoming fight against Chris Weidman on April 8.

    “The UFC is working on it. The lawyers and guys that take care of the visas,” Mousasi told MMA DNA. “I just have to wait. They’re gonna change some things probably in a couple weeks, because there’s a lot of protests (about) the change. I just have to wait and see.

    “The rule is even if you’re born in Iran, you’re a threat. It’s gonna ruin the relationship between countries. I think the U.S. is on the wrong path.”

    FOX Sports spoke to Mousasi’s manager Nima Safapour on Tuesday and while the situation is still developing, he expects the fight to move forward without any issues.

    “We are aware and tracking the situation,” Safapour told FOX Sports via text message. “We are confident the fight will happen.”

    Trump’s travel ban has come under great scrutiny since he signed the executive order banning citizens from certain countries from entering the United States.

    The Trump administration released additional information this week to clear up confusion about who would be allowed to travel into the United States from those countries.

    Dual nationals, who have a passport issued from a country not listed on the ban, are still able to travel into the United States. Mousasi was born in Iran but has been a Dutch citizen for most of his life, which should prevent any problems from arising in regards to his travel into the U.S. for the fight on April 8.

    Regardless, UFC officials have stated that they are monitoring the situation with Mousasi as well as any other potential conflicts that may arise with other fighters on the roster.

    “We are aware of the federal travel ban,” UFC officials said in a statement released. “There are numerous variables including a judicial injunction. We are monitoring and will be affirmatively engaged to ensure that our fighters and employees are able to go where they need to compete and do their jobs.”

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