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Palestinian film-maker held at LA airport on way to Oscars

Published on Feb 21, 2013 6:15 AM
 
Palestinian journalist Emad Burnat walks with his son Jibril after a screening of his Oscar-nominated documentary 5 Broken Cameras in the West Bank city of Ramallah on Jan 28, 2013. The film-maker complained on Wednesday that United States customs briefly held him as he arrived for the Academy Awards, but said his people endure similar problems every day. -- FILE PHOTO: REUTERS

LOS ANGELES (AFP) - Oscar-nominated Palestinian director Emad Burnat complained on Wednesday that United States (US) customs briefly held him as he arrived for the Academy Awards, but said his people endure similar problems every day.

Burnat, whose Five Broken Cameras is shortlisted for best documentary at the 85th Academy Awards on Sunday, said being detained for an hour at Los Angeles' LAX airport with his wife and eight-year-old son was "unpleasant".

"Last night, on my way from Turkey to Los Angeles... my family and I were held at US immigration for about an hour and questioned about the purpose of my visit to the United States," he said in a statement.

Immigration officials wanted proof that he was nominated for an Academy Award "and they told me that if I couldn't prove the reason for my visit, my wife Soraya, my son Gibreel and I would be sent back to Turkey on the same day.

 
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