Exiles: The wars
Clipper Media e RAI CINEMA
Film editing by
Tommaso Gimignani, Vittorio Giannelli – Edizioni Warner Chappell Music Edition
Con il patrocino dell’Alto Commissariato delle Nazione Unite per i Rifugiati
Thousands and thousands of people are exiled due to wars. 55% of all refugees come from the main countries affected by conflicts: Afghanistan, Somalia, Iraq, Syria and Sudan. Studies maintain that entire areas of the world could be de-populated in the next decade due to the increasing of conflicts.
War refugees, internal displaced persons and asylum seekers represent the best known and most dramatic side of forced departure. The “refugee camp” is the most emblematic and unresolved example of this, since it is often a situation of protracted humanitarian assistance, where programmes for re-settlement and re-introduction in society languish at length.
We are dealing with thousands of people obliged to leave their homes to look for shelter in neighbouring countries. Thousands of people fleeing from conflicts that increasingly involves civilian populations.
The documentary movie “Exiles, the wars” is dedicated to these refugees and to the stories of those who have been forced to flee to make safe theirs lives and theirs families’ ones.
The aim of this documentary is to contribute to a better understanding of the conditions of life for war refugees, and to a greater solidarity and capacity to welcome and accept them on the part of European citizens.
From the refugee camps to the informal settlements, from the urban refugees to the ones integrated in the host societies, the documentary emphasizes the life stories, the memories, emotions and desires of the characters.
In 70 minutes, this documentary narrates the reasons for escape; life inside refugee camps; the sufferings, emotions and hopes of people who were forced to abandon their countries.
The tales of the main characters lead the spectator into the daily lives of a refugee camp. Concrete problems are discussed, together with an investigation of the intimate and existential meaning of being a refugee.
In contrast with the personal experiences, distinguished institutional figures’ speeches help the spectator understand the historic and social reasons for the exile and awaken an increasingly anesthetised public towards the suffering of others, and forgetful of its own past.
A distressing picture comes out from the documentary, with thousands of people living on the edge of survival, in need of total assistance and in a condition of insecurity at all levels: housing, health, education, job and economy.
The documentary starts with the pictures and the experiences gathered in the biggest refugee camp in the world: Dadaab. Here, in a remote, arid and desolate land on the boarder line between Kenya and Somalia, around 430.000 Somalis escaped from war are living from over 20 years.
Dadaab camp appears as a huge shanty town where life goes on marked by the rhythm of humanitarian aid distribution, attacks and raids. This situation, together with the fact that people are often without documents, makes it impossible for them to leave the camps.
In the Dadaab camp we arrived to shoot in a very dangerous situation since militant groups from Al Shabaab -the Somali Jihadist group- are based there and mixed up among the refugee population. In the last years, in fact, several serious accidents took place in the camp, including the kidnapping of foreign aid workers and the killing of local refugee leaders, aid workers and policemen. For this reason, the great part of the humanitarian organizations stopped their aid activities in the camp. With the help of the UNCHR’s local staff we could visit all the five camps which composed the Dadaab settlement.
From Africa we go to the war in Syria, which is causing the escape of more than 2 million people, and is generating the biggest humanitarian crisis of the last decade. Their stories take place between Jordan and Turkey : in Zaatari camp, 12 km far from the border between Syria and Jordan, growing so fast that it has become the fourth largest city in Jordan, with 150,000 inhabitants and in the Ackakale refugee camp, established by the government in April 2012, which shelters about 17,000 Syrian refugees.
The shootings among Syrian refugees were implemented during the great emergency causing miles of people fleeing in neighbouring countries and very near to the borderline and to the focal point of the conflict.
The documentary ends with the stories of the 1948 period Palestinian refugees. They left their country, convinced that they would return after a few days and are still away from their own land, with their children and grandchildren, to whom they have handed down the status of refugees. These are stories of humiliation and rebirth on the shores of the Dead Sea, where only a few kilometres separate our protagonists from their own country, their abandoned homes and the loved ones they have never seen again
The documentary is now edited and ready to be broadcasted through the main International Film Festivals.