Actor and director Sean Penn will be making his first visit to Israel, the daily Yedioth Aharonoth has reported. The 55-year-old Hollywood star, who has two Oscars to his credit as best actor, will be the guest of the Israeli humanitarian aid organization IsraAID, which provides humanitarian assistance around the world.
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While in Israel, Penn, whose father is Jewish, will participate in a conference on reconstruction efforts in Haiti following the devastating 2010 earthquake there, Yedioth reported. IsraAID has been active in providing assistance in Haiti since the earthquake, a cause that Penn has been devoted to. He has spent monthys in the Caribbean island nation and has worked alongside Israeli volunteers there, Yedioth stated. Penn’s itinerary in Israel is reportedly to include a visit with former President Shimon Peres.
Earlier this year, Penn came in for criticism for a comment he made in connection with his presentation of the Oscar for best picture award to “Birdman,” produced by Mexican-born Alejandro Inarritu. In reference to Inarrutu, Penn asked: “Who gave this son of a bitch his green card?” He later explained that the comment made in irony and was no way meant to be offensive.