Man 'targeted' at Oz airport: I'm no terrorist, says Muslim
WHEN Bundaberg man Michael Brown decided to take a break to visit his parents in Turkey he never dreamed he'd be the target of police investigations.
But because of his Turkish background, Muslim beliefs and comments made on a police document, he feels he has been unfairly targeted by police.
A third party claimed Mr Brown had shown sympathy to terrorists.
Mr Brown denies the claims and says he now feels like he is being watched at all times.
On a recent trip to Turkey, he said he was stopped at the airport both on the way there and on the way back.
He claims he was detained for hours and had his phone searched.
"I felt interrogated, on the way back in they wanted to look at all my photos and Facebook account," he said.
"I'm not even a Turkish citizen, I can't even go there (long-term), I just go for holidays.
"I wanted to see Mum and Dad, I haven't seen them since 2001, what's wrong with that?"
Mr Brown said he was asked where he would be staying, what he would be doing and if he planned on joining any terrorist organisations while overseas.
His actual plans, he said, involved a quiet beer on the beach and spending time with his parents.
"Mum fed me and fed me and she was going to smack me if I didn't eat," he said with a smile.
"I gained 11kg but I've lost it all again now."
On a serious note, Mr Brown said he understood terrorism was a problem, but he was born in Australia and was loyal to Australia.
"If there was a war I'd be the first one here protecting the country," he said.
"I've even tried to join the army."
He said he felt like law-abiding people were being targeted unfairly.
"Why are they pushing people into a corner? Of course people are going to keep pushing back," he said.
"The point is, why do you target someone with different beliefs? Because of a different colour or background? It's not right.
"It makes me feel violated."
Mr Brown said if people of other ethnicities or beliefs were put through similar kinds of experiences it would cause them to feel alienated.
"Fair enough if there is a lot of terrorism, but it just feels like a violation," he said.
"The whole system shouldn't do that because you're pushing people.
"It's like you can't travel because you'll get violated and the only way out of this country is on a boat so you don't get violated, then you'd feel like a boat person."