The Man Who Lived in an Airport for 18 Years

May 9, 2024 | Social

Mehran Karimi Nasseri was an Iranian refugee who, after a series of setbacks in his life, ended up living in Charles de Gaulle Airport for 18 years. His story is extraordinary and inspiring; it has captured the imagination of many people around the world, with a feature-length documentary about him released in 2017.

Karimi Nasseri’s journey began in 1988 when he attempted to fly from Iran to London to reunite with his biological mother. However, due to various complications that arose along the way, he was instead routed to France and became stuck at Charles de Gaulle Airport. With no valid documents or passport to travel, Karimi Nasseri could only watch as travelers came and went – all while he remained stranded in one place.

Due to this unfortunate predicament, many rumors surrounding Karimi Nasseri’s past began circulating amongst airport staff and passengers alike. He claimed that he had been expelled from Iran, yet research later revealed that this wasn’t actually the case – his father worked with an oil company and his mother was a nurse working with the same company.

This unbelievable story of resilience and determination has become well known around the world due to its inspiring nature, eventually resulting in a feature length documentary about Karimi Nasseri titled Terminal Barahavim directed by Eran Tzur. The film follows Karimi Nasseri’s life at Charles De Gaulle Airport over the span of 18 years and chronicles his attempts at finding freedom amidst such turbulent times. We are encouraged to watch this transformative documentary which serves as an important reminder of how human beings can overcome great obstacles and continue facing life with immense courage.

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David B