ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan24) – A Kurdish filmmaker who was recently denied a US visa while his acclaimed movie was screened at an American film festival criticized US President Donald Trump’s immigration ban.
On Jan. 27, President Trump signed an executive order barring people of seven countries from traveling to the US for a minimum of 90 days.
Three of those countries are considered sponsors of terrorism (Iran, Sudan, and Syria), and three are designated countries of concern (Libya, Somalia,’ and Yemen).
Kurdish filmmaker Hussain Hassan, whose movie The Dark Wind chronicles Ezidi Kurds’ turmoil at the hands of the Islamic State (IS), was denied the right to attend the screening at the Miami Film Festival.
“We artists are also anti-terror. We’ve concentrated our efforts on battling radicalism,” Hassan told Kurdistan24.
He added it was the natural right of any country to protect its citizens but to generalize and stereotype and assume anyone born in a Muslim-majority country was a threat to America was not logical.
“Haven’t Kurds fought [IS] on behalf of the world? And they are now included in Trump’s Ban?” Hassan asked.
The North American premiere of The Dark Wind was scheduled to screen in a section called Cinema 360, the festival’s world cinema panorama sidebar.
An Oscar-nominated Iranian Filmmaker, Asghar Farhadi, also said he would refuse to attend the ceremony even if he was issued a visa.
The Salesman is nominated for an Academy Award for best foreign-language movie. Farhadi was to be present at a ceremony on Feb. 26 in Los Angeles, but he rejected the idea and condemned the ban as “unjust.”
“I am establishing new vetting measures to keep radical Islamic terrorists out of the US. We only want to admit those into our country who will support our country and love deeply our people,” Trump said during a press conference.
The 19 hijackers implicated in the Sep. 11, 2001, terrorist attack came from Egypt, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates.
None of those countries are subject to what Trump described as “new vetting measures,” the New York Times reported.
Editing by Karzan Sulaivany