'5 Broken Cameras' Director Emad Burnat: 'It's Not Normal For A Human To Be Treated Like This'

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Michael Moore and Emad Burnat, the Oscar-nominated director behind "5 Broken Cameras" who was detained by immigration officials at Los Angeles International Airport on Tuesday night, appeared on HuffPost Live on Wednesday to discuss the incident.

"It was strange for me last night when I arrived at the airport in Los Angeles, because I came to the United States this year six times. This is the first time that's happened to me," Burnat told HuffPost Live host Ahmed Shihab-Eldin. "They started asking me questions and taking pictures. They were asking me for documents and invitations. I told them I had the hotel reservation, I am the Oscar nominee and I came here for this purpose. I had the invitation in my iPhone and I had all documents on my iPhone. They told me, 'We don't care, we need more documents, we need papers, and if you don't give us documents we will send you back home.'"

Burnat, the first Palestinian to ever receive an Oscar nomination, said he was accustomed to such treatment, but that doesn't make it right.

"All the Palestinians get the same treatment in our country, in our home and in different countries," Burnat said (video above). "So it's not normal for a human to be treated like this for all our lives, or for our kids. So I am seeking for peace and for freedom for my kids. And I want them to be treated like humans, not because we are Palestinians that we should get bad treatment or different treatment."

Burnat, who co-directed the film "5 Broken Cameras" with Guy Davidi, an Israeli, was on his way into the United States to attend Sunday's Oscars ceremony when he was held up for 90 minutes by airport security on Tuesday. The director contacted Moore, who was hosting a dinner for the Best Documentary Feature and Short nominees. Moore relayed Burnat's situation via Twitter to over 1.4 million followers.


Michael Moore
Emad Burnat, Palestinian director of Oscar nominated "5 Broken Cameras" was held tonight by immigration at LAX as he landed to attend Oscars

Michael Moore
Emad, his wife & 8-yr old son were placed in a holding area and told they didn't have the proper invitation on them to attend the Oscars.

Michael Moore
Although he produced the Oscar invite nominees receive, that wasn't good enough & he was threatened with being sent back to Palestine.

Michael Moore
Apparently the Immigration & Customs officers couldn't understand how a Palestinian could be an Oscar nominee. Emad texted me for help.

Michael Moore
I called Academy officials who called lawyers. I told Emad to give the officers my phone # and to say my name a couple of times.

Michael Moore
After 1.5 hrs, they decided to release him & his family & told him he could stay in LA for the week & go to the Oscars. Welcome to America.

Michael Moore
"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."

Michael Moore
Emad Burnat, Palestinian farmer turned filmmaker, director of "5 Broken Cameras", the 1st Palestinian doc ever nominated for the Oscar.

Michael Moore
This all just happened tonight, a few hours ago. He was certain they were going to deport him. But not if I had anything to do about it.

"5 Broken Cameras" is one of five Best Documentary Feature nominees at the 85th annual Academy Awards. The film is joined in the category by "How to Survive a Plague," "Searching for Sugar Man," "The Invisible War" and "The Gatekeepers." More on the controversy surrounding the origin country of "5 Broken Cameras" can be found here.

Watch Burnat and Moore on HuffPost Live above.

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