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Thursday, November 27, 2014

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U.S. student says he was refused entry into U.K. over Israeli passport stamps

Tags: International
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Kansas City Jewish student says U.K. border agents detained him over Israeli entry stamps (like the one pictured) in his U.S. passport. [Wikimedia Commons]

(Kansas City Jewish Chronicle/JNS.org) A Kansas City student who was denied entry into the United Kingdom late last month and was detained for more than nine hours by U.K. customs officials, before being put on a plane back to the U.S., believes he was targeted because he is Jewish and had traveled to Israel.

Louis Cantor, 23, arrived in the U.K. and waited in line to go through customs. He was detained after a customs agent saw two pages in his passport with Israeli stamps. Cantor says he was never told why he was being denied entry. He was told his photo and fingerprints have now been placed in a database that will make it difficult for him to obtain entry into the U.K. or any other European Union country.

Cantor’s father, Chuck Cantor, said that during the time Cantor was detained, he was given only half of a sandwich and very little water. When Cantor asked for more food and water, he was denied and told to “stop pestering.”

The U.K. man who had offered Cantor summer work experience, Kevin Shilling, said that the U.K. Border Agency agent he spoke to in his attempt to get Cantor admitted into the country made more than one anti-Semitic comment.

After his detention, Cantor was escorted to a plane for a flight back to the U.S. “My only real goal with this fiasco is to get my fingerprints and picture removed from their database and the blacked out stamp in my passport removed as well,” he said.

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