Occupied: A Palestinian Filmmaker Teaches Documentary Filmmaking to Western Saharan Refugees

Occupied: A Palestinian Filmmaker Teaches Documentary Filmmaking to Western Saharan Refugees

Occupied: The Western Sahara issue through the eyes of a Palestinian running a filmmaking workshop in the refugee camps in Algeria.

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Instead of getting its independence in 1975 when Spain pulled out of its colony called Western Sahara, neighbouring Morocco invaded and colonised Western Sahara. As such Western Sahara is known as “the last colony in Africa”, and many of its people, the Saharawi, live in refugee camps in Algeria, where they fled to in 1975. Twenty-six-year-old Palestinian Reham Ghazali is a confident, ambitious female filmmaker whose short films focus on the place of woman in Palestinian society. Reham is invited to the refugee camps of Algeria to give a workshop on filmmaking for the Saharawi women of the camp. The filmmaking workshop therefore brings together women who are all under occupation (the Saharawi’s homeland of Western Sahara is under Moroccan occupation, and the Palestinians are under Israeli occupation) and provides them with a means to tell the world about their plight and their stories through filmmaking. A short film is produced during the workshop. The story, mostly observational, also documents Reham’s experiences as a city girl, visiting and living in the refugee camp.

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Neil Shaw – Ref. 7761

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