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He was a crucial member of the team behind Oscar winning documentary The White Helmets. But Syrian cinematographer Khaled Khatib wasn't walking the red carpet on Sunday night. Instead, he was stuck in Turkey, after his passport was cancelled by the Syrian government, stopping Khatib from receiving the award he says is an honor.
> The film is extremely important. For it to win an Oscar is an honor to the efforts of the film's entire team and also an honor to the Civil Defense volunteers who put their lives at risk in order to save civilians.
Often seen in the aftermath of air strikes, risking their lives to rescue victims amongst the devastation. The documentary gives a glimpse into the daily life of the volunteers.>>
We also managed to put out a message from the people of Syria who are constantly coming under air strikes by military planes.>> Syria's government has accused the group of being a front for Al-Qaeda and of faking footage for propaganda purposes, charges the White Helmets deny. The Oscar win gives moral support to the group, who used the global spotlight to urge the world to stop bloodshed in Syria.
The glitz and glamour of Hollywood a stark contrast to the lives of those at the center of the documentary. Just minutes after the award was presented, video claims to show the White Helmets back amongst the rubble of air strikes in the city of Arija.