Oscar-Nominated Syrian Cinematographer Barred From Entering The U.S. To Attend The Academy Awards

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According to the Associated Press, U.S. immigration officials have barred a Syrian cinematographer who worked on an Oscar-nominated film from entering the U.S. ahead of Sunday’s Academy Awards.

The Department of Homeland Security blocked Khaled Khateeb from traveling to Los Angeles for the Academy Awards. He was scheduled to arrive Saturday, but his plans have changed after U.S. officials reportedly found “derogatory information” regarding Khateeb.

Derogatory information is a categorization that includes a range of issues from terror connections to simple passport irregularities.

Khateeb worked on a 40-minute Netflix documentary “The White Helmets” which covers the Syrian civil war and is nominated for Best Documentary Short. It includes dramatic scenes of the 6-year conflict, such as people digging through their destroyed homes looking for survivors.

Khateeb had reportedly been issued a visa to attend the Oscars, but Turkish authorities detained him this week, according to the internal U.S. government correspondence, and he needed a passport waiver from the U.S. to enter the country.

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