Syrian authorities have banned actor Samer Ismail from leaving the country to attend the Venice Film Festival in Italy where his film “The Day I Lost My Shadow” is due to be aired.
Syrian writer Rami Koussa posted on Facebook that “while one of the most important film festivals in the world celebrates Syrian cinema, we besiegeour youth and deprive them of the opportunity to represent their country abroad.”
“Samer arrived at the border to be surprised that he is not allowed to leave the country without permission from the conscription division. He was told to return and has lost the opportunity to attend the festival after all the pain and fatigue of filming and the procedures necessary to obtain a visa from the Italian Embassy,” Koussa added.
Syrian local media reported earlier this week that every man between the ages of 17 and 42 must obtain approval from the conscription office before leaving the country.
Ismail is best known for portraying the character of Umar Bin Al-Khattab, the second caliph of Islam, in the television series “Omar”.