An incoming Harvard freshman who lives in Lebanon was denied entry into the US due to his friends' Facebook posts, NBC News reported.
According to The Harvard Crimson, the university's newspaper, Ismail Ajjawi, 17, was quested by US immigration officials at Boston's Logan International Airport.
Ajjawi identifies as Palestinian, and claims he was asked about his religious practices, as well as to unlock his phone and laptop, The Crimson reported. Five hours later, an immigration officer asked him about his friends' social media activity, which included "political points of view that oppose the US."
Though Ajjawi claimed that he does "not like, share, or comment" on those posts and "has no single post" on his timeline discussing politics, immigration officers chose to deny him entry.
He has since returned to Lebanon and is in touch with a lawyer, hoping to resolve the issue and begin his studies as planned, Ajjawi told The Crimson.
Customs and Border Protection told NBC News that Ajjawi was deemed inadmissible to the U.S. "based on information discovered during the CBP inspection." It also said it could not release information about specific travelers due to privacy laws.
The State Department told NBC News it cannot discuss the details of individual cases, since visa records are confidential under US law.
Jason Newton, a Harvard spokesman, confirmed to NBC News that that Ajjawi had been denied entry into the US. In a statement, he said: "The university is working closely with the student’s family and appropriate authorities to resolve this matter so that he can join his classmates in the coming days."