Kiwi tourist detained in Kazakhstan after immigration refused to believe New Zealand was not a state in Australia

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chloe horses
Image courtesy of Bivouac
Image courtesy of Bivouac
  • Tourist Chloe Phillips-Harris was arrested at the Kazakhstan boarder
  • Immigration officers did not believe that New Zealand was a country
  • Officials believed that New Zealand was really a state of Australia
  • Chloe was let go free after a bribe

A New Zealand tourist reported that she was detained for almost two days because immigration officials in Kazakhstan did not believe her that New Zealand was a country.

Chloe Phillips-Harris, 28, arrived in Kazakhstan in May for what was meant to be an exciting adventure exploring the mountainous country and working on farms, but when her flight touched down at Almaty Airport, immigration officers refused to let her into the country without her Australian passport.

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“I landed in Kazakhstan on the last flight of the night, and I got to an immigration booth and they asked me for an Australian passport, and told me I couldn’t come in without an Australian passport,” and “They said New Zealand’s clearly a part of Australia.” Ms Phillips-Harris Said.

Ironically New Zealand was missing from a map of the world in the room she was interrogated in, which made it impossible for her to convince officials that New Zealand really existed.

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After a night in a locked cell, Phillips-Harris soon realised that she would only be let go after a bribe. Once set free she was told to board a flight to China. “They chucked me on a plane but luckily I knew someone who could help, in those countries it’s all about who you know” Ms Phillips-Harris Said.

More on this bizarre story.

5 COMMENTS

  1. “Immigration officers did not believe that New Zealand wasn’t a country” If you don’t believe that it wasn’t a country, that would mean you do believe that it is a country. Right?

  2. Sorry,but it is hard to believe. Maybe Kazachstan is unknown for most people in NZ, but it doesn’t mean that it is in the same way with Kazakhs. I am sure that they are educeted enough to know where is Australia and where is New Zealand.

  3. Having traveled to Kazakhstan before, I am sure they knew NZ exist and were looking only for a bribe… They probably still laugh about it.

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