Despite Threats of Censorship, Documentary Filmmakers Show Human Rights Violations in Western Sahara

A Sahrawi crowd in Laayune, Western Sahara, is charged by Moroccan anti-riot police in plainclothes. It is not uncommon for police to outnumber the protesters. Screen capture from 3 Broken Cameras.

Stories about life in Western Sahara — a disputed territory controlled by the Moroccan government — is rarely told by people who live there.

In a militarized environment with aggressive controls on media and citizen reporting, few stories of Western Sahara reach audiences beyond the immediate region. But a new documentary film that charts one independent media group’s struggle to document human rights violations in Western Sahara has the opportunity to change this.

The film, 3 Stolen Cameras, had its world premiere at the DOK Leipzig Documentary Film Festival in Germany last November, despite threats of censorship and funding challenges.

The 17-minute short film produced by the Western Sahara media group Equipe Media and the Sweden-based film production collective RåFilm, is both by and about Equipe Media. It features footage taken by Equipe Media in Western Sahara since 2009, but was edited and post-produced in Sweden.

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Source: Global Voices

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