Palestinian Photographer Misses World Press Photo Event Thanks to Trump Ban

Palestinian Photographer Misses World Press Photo Event Thanks to Trump Ban

A renowned photojournalist has spoken out after she was forced to cancel her planned attendance at the World Press Photo event in Amsterdam due to complications from Trump’s travel ban.

Eman Mohammed, a Palestinian photojournalist and TED Talk speaker, had been booked to jury the World Press Photo photojournalism event in Amsterdam, but had to pull out last minute after President Donald Trump issued the controversial executive order that places restrictions on travel for citizens of seven Middle Eastern countries. Mohammed is both a legal and permanent resident of the US and does not come from any of the seven countries listed in Trump’s order. However, according to the statement issued by World Press Photo, her lawyers have advised her that as a Palestinian, she should not travel for risk of being denied a return trip home.

The statement outlines that “[the issue of] the U.S. government’s executive order means she risks being unable to return to her family if she comes to Amsterdam." The decision follows much confusion over a grey area in regards to whether further countries with a large Muslim population are at risk from future bans.

Mohammed also spoke in depth about the situation with TIME LightBox, which you can read here.

[via TIME]

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59 Comments

Roman Kazmierczak's picture

Stop it already. Nothing happened. She changed her plans... it doesn't mean that she would be denied return. There were many bans and restrictions during last 8 years and nobody was crying about it.

David Vaughn's picture

Which bans are you referring to?

Michael Kormos's picture

My 78-yr old grandma was detained at JFK on two separate occasions. This happened years ago. She is a permanent resident (US) but her travel pattern raised some suspicions apparently, and she was detained and questioned for hours by DHS. She was cool about it and cooperated. It's business as usual at any international port of entry.

I don't see the big deal about 11 people being detained, nor about some photographer having to change her plans.

We live in a world of headline opportunism, where anyone and everyone is seeking their moment in the spotlight by including themselves in a news story. People (and media) will distort, exaggerate, dramatize and intentionally misinterpret current events to help fuel their distaste for the current president.

I really hope Patrick and Lee exercise better oversight over the editorial content here. Left unchecked, it will devolve into another LiveLeak.

David Vaughn's picture

I'm sorry that happened to your grandma, but I'm not sure I understand the relevance to the current ban.

Hi Roman, ever were 'routinely' stopped and detained when entering a country? If not, I suggest you rather observe than judge. Unless you have been trough this type of routine (some are better than others) you have no experience to talk with. For some people it might be as bad as not returning home loosing a job, but having family to fall back on in a home country, for others its certain death - all depending where you come to a country from. Yes, she changed her plans - in order to not possibly be separated from her KIDS, who would be more traumatized by their than an adult!

Anonymous's picture

Well, by your logic, you can't comment on it either unless you've gone through a similar experience. Maybe your grandmother? Nope... doesn't count! ;-)

I think we're all a little too old to be so dramatic about, well...anything. :-)

Roman Kazmierczak's picture

First of all I didn't say a word about what I think about this policy. I suggest to read twice before you decide to reply.
Secondly, that women wasn't stopped and according to new policy she wouldn't be as she is not from banned country.
Thirdly, there was no outcry when innocent people were killed by american bombs, but when people from those countries are unable to enter the US there is suddenly big movement. It is just this fuucking hypocrisy that kills me.
Above that, the fact that she is a photographer doesn't make this story anyhow photography related...

Remember all the other times that photographers and programmers and normal people weren't able to go back to America during the numerous immigration bans spanning the 15 years?

No? Well, thats probably because nobody reported it because it was accepted as normal behavior when an administration needs time to figure things out and imposes temporary bans.

This sucks for some people but this is far from being a unique situation.

Anonymous's picture

Without getting into the politics of it, I just want to point out, from the point of view of a non-American observer, that it is *abundantly* clear that this ban is different in structure, intent and scope compared to pretty much anything in the last three or four decades of US history. And not just who it covers and how long, but the way it has been rolled out, the decisionmaking process behind it, and the processes of implementation, exception and appeal.

Supporters of the ban need to decide to own what it actually is: unprecedented, different, and discriminatory in intent. Rather than run away from what it is when it is criticised.

Either it is a policy you support or it is not! Have an argument on the policy but be aware of the uniqueness of implementation. This ban is substantively different to the others as a matter of observable fact, and it is quite silly to suggest otherwise.

And beyond that, I hope you all find a way to move on. But in the meantime you're all going to have to accept the way human interest angles will bubble up on every blog everywhere; it's not just clicks, but also the real life impacts of the change.

Anonymous's picture

"Without getting into the politics of it"
"discriminatory in intent"

Come on, Morty! Make up your mind. ;-)

Anonymous's picture

It clearly _is_ discriminatory in intent, in that it discriminates based on country of origin (in some cases totally), on status, and where waivers are to be given, specifically gives priority to members of minority religions in a set of unambiguously majority-muslim states.

You can get that just by reading the executive order, which is surely representative of intent.

So this isn't politics, it's fact. Plain and simple.

Anonymous's picture

It DOES in fact discriminate by country but that's pretty much it. Everything else is incidental. The fact that these specific predominately Muslim countries, and not ALL predominately Muslim countries, are the source of a great deal of terrorism is what I like to call "a clue."
I think your perspective, while not necessarily extreme, is still political even if your intent wasn't.
That being said, I didn't find your comments to be especially objectionable but, rather, I try to bring a little comic relief to these kinds of debates. :-)

@Mike Houghton

Of course the ban discriminates. Look up the original meaning of that word. There is nothing inherently negative about it.

Priority should be given to "members of minority religions" (obviously Christians in this case) in that part of the world! Muslim countries don't take to kindly to those practicing another religion. Where have you been? Is the negative meaning of the word discrimination lost on you when it comes to the plight of Christians in the Middle East?? Certainly looks that way.

Anonymous's picture

" Is the negative meaning of the word discrimination lost on you when it comes to the plight of Christians in the Middle East?? Certainly looks that way."

And this certainly looks like an ad hominem attack. But I'll try not to read it as you calling me stupid, ignorant or callous.

But I will come down off the fence. So as to your other comment: as you say, I am a foreigner.

I am white and english. So at the moment I don't have to be too worried.

At the moment.

But I am also wise enough to understand this isn't about terrorism or illegal immigration. So I will accept it and move on.

Will you accept what comes next? Do you have any foreign colleagues? Because the process that is under way is going to visit them no matter what you might think. This isn't about terrorism or illegal immigration; those are baby steps. This is about economic nationalism.

That could affect me and my work, of course. But you know... there are probably nicer places to work, and there might even be nicer, kinder people to meet than Americans. I didn't think that possible until November last year.

Motti Bembaron's picture

Reality is, Christians and member of other non-Muslim religions, are seriously being discriminated in the same territories she is originated from.

First off let me say I'm not a Trump supporter. The fact that I have to disclose that is part of the very reason this is an issue. The public is on edge and we are in the middle of a witch hunt on BOTH sides. And this idea that we have to pick one or the other is over-reactionary because choosing one side and fighting the other is not how you solve or discuss problems.

People who don't support the ban now (myself included) were just fine in ignoring the ban in the past. And thats because (up until recently) the American public understood that we don't have open borders and believed that coming into this amazing country was a privilege and not a right. But that understanding of facts has been lost for some reason.

This article is a solid example as to why our society (and the world watching it) is so split. These aren't news stories. They're one-sided editorials that exist primary to cause division. The same articles could have been written during past bans but they weren't because it really isn't as big a deal as its being played out to be. We've got problems here that are NOT only due to the current administration or even the last administration. We have old issues that need to be fixed and there is absolutely nothing wrong with putting on the brakes once in a while to do a walk around and see what is going on. But you can't do that when there's a crowd with pitchforks waiting for you to get out of your car.

Motti Bembaron's picture

Well said.

@Mike Houghton How is it fundamentally different? More importantly how is it wrong, since I suspect you believe it to be wrong? The fact is, this ban is an obviously common sense approach to the world we live in today. It is extremely long overdue. It needs to be expanded to other countries.

The primary duty of an American president is to defend America. As an American I find it highly offensive when foreigners try and tell us who we should be letting into our country. It's simply being anti-American.

All countries have the right to determine who it wishes to let in. That's fundamental to a country being a country. A country without control of its borders is no country. I suggest you "accept" that and "move on."

Dallas Dahms's picture

This kind of reporting is going to send me into a self-imposed media ban. #notevennews

Whether you are right or left or middle, seeing blogs fall into this trap of agenda-driven articles is so sad. There literally is no escape from people trying to force their opinions on you.

I expected to remove the NYT and Washington Post from my news feed. But when you have to start unsubscribing from Tech sites like C-Net and The Verge, or photography sites like F-Stoppers then you know this media push is out of control with these one-sided articles.

Unfortunately most media and their websites are very biased in left wing and anti-American views. America's new president is causing that to become far more obvious than it ever was. I see that exposure as a good thing because it will show more and more Americans the threat their country faces from within and from abroad.

Dallas Dahms's picture

So true. It's almost like an "idiot roll call" to see this happen, but then as you say, it's a good thing. Now we know where the idiot's voices are coming from.

Dallas Dahms's picture

Totally! I also removed The Verge from my RSS feed yesterday. I really hope I don't have to do the same for Fstoppers.

Lance Bachelder's picture

This is a complete non-story. Why is this on this site - hope this kind of crap doesn't become a regular thing here, I really enjoy the site.

Roman Kazmierczak's picture

It is a regular thing already

Chris Kennedy's picture

Facepalm
Why on earth is Fstoppers dabbling with these types of "stories" lately? I come here for photography/video news and community-not to get into political nonsense!

So by getting political, how about not following the media bias and calling this "ban" what it is??? A TEMPORARY PAUSE! Obama did this in 2011 with these same 7 countries, Carter did this with Iran in 1980 and where was all the rhetoric back then?
The "Muslim population are at risk from future bans." This isn't a ban on Muslim/Islam! If it was then Indonesia, Egypt, Saudi Arabia (who should be on that list), etc. would be part of the list of countries affected by this.

Anonymous's picture

F-Stoppers is going full on FakeNews propaganda. I'm out.

Just STOP IT!

She's a "legal US resident"!!! Complete BS story!!!

It's no surprise to me that a bunch of photographers here are so quick to throw one of their fellow photographers under the bus. I doubt a majority of Eman Mohammed's critics could identify many Middle Eastern countries on a map, let alone explain the intricacies of immigration law. I doubt many of her critics are as good a photographer as she is. Sure guys, continue to dish it out to her, and to Fstoppers for daring to share her story. You're so tough and manly.