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Palestinian Oscar Nominee Held At LAX, Michael Moore Intervenes



LOS ANGELES - Palestinian filmmaker and Oscar nominee Emad Burnat was detained and questioned for several hours by US immigration officials at Los Angeles Airport, Israeli daily Haaretz reports.

After being threatened to be sent straight back home, Burnat was released early Wednesday from LAX airport after the intervention of US director and activist Michael Moore, whom Burnat had contacted by Twitter for help.

According to Moore’s twitter account: “Emad, his wife & 8 year old son were placed in a holding area and told they didn’t have the proper invitation on them to attend the Oscars."

Moore said that he called Academy Awards officials, who called lawyers to contact immigration officials to confirm Emad's invitation to the Oscars.

Burnat's “5 Broken Cameras” is the first Palestinian documentary ever to be nominated for an Academy Award. It depicts the struggles of Burnat, a family farmer, and his Palestinian village situated near the wall separating the West Bank from Israeli territory. The film is shot with a video camera Burnat bought for the birth of his son, and recounts how the boy grows up in the face of continuous conflict.

Moore tweeted a comment from Burnat after his release: "It's nothing I'm not already used to," he told me later. "When u live under occupation, with no rights, this is a daily occurrence."

Among the other nominees in the documentary film category Sunday is The Gatekeepers, shot by Israeli director Dror Moreh.

Here are some other tweets from Moore: 

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