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International human rights film festival


CCA Glasgow, October 2017, film festival, human rights film festivalalDocument’s international human rights documentary film festival is coming!

Established in 2003, it provides a platform that attracts Scottish, British and international documentary filmmakers and promotes local and international discussion, cultural exchange and education.

And by screening the best of recent and historical human rights documentaries, Document is a space for the visibility and consideration of documentary film as an art form and social practice.

Document works with many local, national and international organisations and is a member of the Human Rights Film Network.

Over the last 14 years, Document has screened over 600 films, promoting an expansive understanding of human rights to include subjects such as immigration and asylum, women’s rights, war and conflict, self-determination, racism, LGBT rights, miscarriages of justice, eviction, poverty, social exclusion, workers/unemployed rights, mental health and social care, young and older people, human trafficking, indigenous cultures, environmental concerns, global policies and their local consequences, Roma gypsies and travellers, HIV/AIDS, drug trafficking and addiction and disability issues.

This year, Document’s International Human Rights Film Festival 2017 runs from 19-22 October 2017 at the Centre for Contemporary Arts (CCA) Glasgow.

Some of the films this year:

Dil Leyla: At 26, Leyla is elected the youngest mayor in Turkey, in her hometown of Cizre, a Kurdish capital city near the Iraqi-Syrian border—a city she was forced to flee over 20 years ago, after her father was killed by the Turkish military when she was a little girl.

Her goal is to heal and beautify the civil-war-torn city, which is enjoying a break in the violence. But on the eve of Turkey’s parliamentary elections, everything changes, and old memories become more real than ever.

Prison Sisters: takes us through the journey of two young women who have been released from prison in Afghanistan.

Sara’s uncle has planned to kill her an attempt to save his honor in their small village. Fearing for her life Sara escapes to Sweden, but Najibeh stays behind. While Sara struggles with her newfound freedom, her prison-mate Najibeh disappears and soon Sara hears that she was stoned to death.

Sara and the filmmaker want to find out the truth, only to encounter a maze of half- truths on the streets of Afghanistan.

We follow the two main characters, revealing what happened to them – each with an exceptional fate depicting the horrific reality for women in Afghanistan.

Grab and Run: Since Kyrgyzstan gained its independence in 1991, there has been a revival of the ancient practice of Ala-Kachuu, which translates roughly as “grab and run”.

More than half of Kyrgyz women are married after being kidnapped by the men who become their husbands. Some escape after violent ordeals, but most are persuaded to stay by tradition and fear of scandal.

Although the practice is said to have its root in nomadic customs, the tradition remains at odds with modern Kyrgyzstan. Ala-Kachuu was outlawed during Soviet era and remains illegal under the Kyrgyz criminal code, but the law has rarely been enforced to protect women from this violent practice.

Today in Kyrgyzstan, sheep thieves are punished more severely than bride kidnappers.

Gulîstan, Land of Roses: They stand at the forefront of the fight for freedom in the Middle East. These young women belong to the armed wing of the PKK, the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, which is also an active guerrilla movement.

From their camp hidden away in the mountains, the women lead a nomadic life, undergoing ideological and practical training before being sent out to the front lines. Their mission? Defend Kurdish territory in Iraq and Syria, and defeat ISIS.

By capturing their ritualised daily activities, as well as the emotional and intellectual bonds that unite them, Gulîstan, Land of Roses sheds light on the lives of these women who are collectively fighting for a revolutionary ideal advocating female empowerment.

The film also gives them a powerful voice, and in return, many of them openly share with us their most intimate thoughts and dreams.

Even as fighting against ISIS intensifies in the Middle East, these women bravely continue their battle against barbarism.

Offering a window into this largely unknown world, Gulîstan, Land of Roses exposes the hidden face of this highly mediatiszed war: the female, feminist face.

For further details about the Festival’s programme, click here.

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