Washington: The US Department of State on Friday apologised to Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan following his detention at the US immigration at Los Angeles airport and offered a clarification, saying that even 'American diplomats' were pulled over security issues.
"Sorry for the hassle at the airport, @iamsrk - even American diplomats get pulled for extra screening!," Nisha Biswal, Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia, US Department of State said in a tweet.
US Ambassador to India Richard Verma also posted an apology on Twitter. "Sorry for the trouble at LAX @iamsrk. We are working to ensure it doesn’t happen again. Your work inspires millions, including in the US," Verma wrote on Twitter.
The actor replied to his apology, saying, "No trouble sir, respect the protocol & not expecting 2 b above it. It’s just a tad inconvenient. Thx for ur concern".
Khan had tweeted his displeasure earlier saying that it "sucked" to be detained at the US immigration every time.
"I fully understand & respect security with the way the world is, but to be detained at US immigration every damn time really really sucks. The brighter side is while waiting caught some really nice Pokemons," he said.
However, Former Indian Foreign Secretary, Ambassador to the U.S Nirupama Rao came out in support of the security measure at LA Airport saying that one cannot question the customs and border protection laws of any sovereign country.
"The US post 9/11 is a changed country. If you're not prepared to accept stringent security/controls don't go there. Everything falls under the rubric of homeland security. No foreigner is really exempt," she said in a series of tweets.
Meanwhile, former Pakistan ambassador to US Husain Haqqani has called for updated equipment for Customs and Border Protection officers so that such incidents can be avoided.
"Time to give @cbp officers better computers and advise them to check on individuals with other branches of US govt," he tweeted.
This is, however, not the first time that SRK has been detained at a US airport.
The same happened at the New York airport in April 2012 when he went there to address students at Yale University. He was then detained by the immigration officials for over two hours.
Even in 2009, Khan was detained by US immigration officials at Newark Liberty International Airport in New Jersey after his name came up on a computer alert list....