A Maine filmmaker who was hired to document aid vessels defying Israel’s blockade of the Gaza Strip is among those being detained for deportation from Israel, his father and girlfriend said Tuesday.

Scott Hamann, 29, of South Portland was aboard a ship that was part of a flotilla that was attacked Monday by commandos. Nine pro-Palestinian activists were killed.

Hamann’s live-in girlfriend, Charlotte Stuart, 22, said she got a call Tuesday from the State Department saying Hamann was being held in a detention center and will be deported.

“He was complaining of a toe injury because a grenade landed near his foot, but other than that he was fine,” Stuart said. She didn’t know whether the grenade exploded.

Hamann, who owns a company called Harbor Light Films, was hired by David Rubinson, an American expatriate living in France, to document the Free Gaza flotilla, said his father, Moe Hamann of Nashua, N.H.

The flotilla tried to take supplies to Gaza, which Israel has blockaded for three years with the aim of keeping Iranian-backed Hamas from building its arsenal of weapons. But the blockade has also deepened the poverty of the 1.5 million Palestinians in the strip.

Moe Hamann said he got a courtesy phone call from a State Department employee in Tel Aviv, telling him that his son was scheduled to be deported within 72 hours.

“I’m very relieved, I really am. I just want him home,” he said.

The State Department employee also told him that his son would get his camera equipment back.

“I’m sure they’ll deep-six the footage,” Moe Hamann said.

Hamann’s job was to film the goings-on and upload footage to www.witnessgaza.com, Stuart said.

She said he was one of nine American participants and was aboard the Challenger I, an American-flagged vessel. Most of the violence occurred on a Turkish-flagged ship.

Hamann was documenting the event as a job, but also felt strongly about the purpose of the flotilla, Stuart said.

“He definitely had some passion for the cause, but he wasn’t as hard-core as most of the people on the boat,” she said.


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