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On Demand News
World Wide
By Transterra Editor
27 Nov 2013

One of the most innovative parts of Transterra Media is our On-Demand News™ model. This new model is an ongoing working relationship between media outlets and Transterra Media in which we produce a set number of video or photo stories for our publishers at a set price, on a continuous and ongoing basis.

Using a framework of production and editorial standards, based upon our buyer's specific needs, we utilize our extensive network of journalists to regularly produce professional, in-depth content from across the globe.

You can integrate your newsroom with TTM by contacting our sales team at [email protected], or calling us at +961 1 442 001, +961 1 567 652 or +961 1 568 652. Our sales team will discuss your needs, acquire your production and editorial standards, and reach an agreement with you on production and price. Once these details are finalized we will begin producing content for you.

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Documentaries
Worldwide
By Mais Istanbuli
25 Nov 2013

TRANSTERRA is becoming more than just a marketplace where producers can showcase and sell their documentaries. We are a resource for archive footage, and a community that provides collaboration opportunities.

The documentaries shown here are part of TRANSTERRA's greater catalog of options. Full-length screenings are available for most, and you can access these by sending an e-mail request to [email protected].

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Multimedia: Editor's Picks
World Wide
By Transterra Editor
21 Nov 2013

Multimedia work from our contributors that focus on extraordinary subjects from around the world.

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DOCUMENTARY COLLECTION - Editor's Picks
Worldwide
By Editor's Picks
16 Jul 2013

TRANSTERRA is becoming more than just a marketplace where producers can showcase and sell their documentaries. We are a resource for archive footage, and a community that provides collaboration opportunities.

The documentaries shown here are part of TRANSTERRA's greater catalog of options. Full-length screenings are available for most, and you can access these by sending an e-mail request to [email protected].

North America
MENA
Egypt (6) Libya (1) Morocco (1) Palestine (1)

Sub-Saharan Africa
Central Asia
Southeast Asia
East Asia

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Milites
Rome, Italy
By mikrofilm
15 Jul 2013

A nice video reportage telling about ancient romans and a group of volunteers doing historical reenactements.

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Food insecurity: Does South Korea hav...
Seoul, South Korea
By maltekol
12 Jul 2013

The World Health Organization warns that overpopulation and a lack of arable land contribute to global food insecurity. So scientists are developing new farming technology to offset potential food shortages. Researchers in South Korea are experimenting with vertical farms; gardens that instead of spreading out, go straight up.
Jason Strother and Malte Kollenberg report from Seoul.

Almost half of South Korea’s 50 millions citizens live here in the capital. And in a country with very limited agricultural land, feeding all of these people presents a challenge. Some observers say the nation faces increasing food insecurity.

Park Hwan-il is food security analyst at the Samsung Economic Research Institute in Seoul.

Int: Park Hwan-il, SERI (English)
"The food self sufficiency rate in Korea is just about 26 percent. Which means three quarters of the food we consume is from the foreign countries. That means the Korean people’s health and nutrition depends on outside factors that we cannot control”

Park says that climate conditions or other instability in the international market makes importing food unpredictable. It’s not only a problem for Korea, but for many other countries too. But some scientists say there is a solution.

Int. from online: Dickson Despommier, Columbia University (English)
“My name is Dickson Despommier: I teach at Columbia Universities Medical School and school of public health. The world would be a much better place, if we had vertical farming.”

Despommier says tower-like hydroponic farms could someday stand alongside skyscrapers as a key food source for billions of city dwellers

Int. from online: Dickson Despommier, Columbia University (English)
“Here’s my vision of what a vertical farm might look like. My gold standard for this is the Apple Store in New York City on 5th Avenue. If you took that building and made it into a five-story building. Now in the building you have multiple floors of course, and inside each floor you have multiple layers of crops.”

Despommier says vertical farms could be a key solution for countries with a growing population or limited arable land. Like South Korea.

30-kilometers south of Seoul in Suwon, the government is trying to make Despommier’s vision a reality. The Rural Development Administration has built the prototype of a vertical farm.Inside this research facility a small team of scientists is working on turning this concept a marketable product.So far, their experiment is only 3-storeys high. But they hope that one day, the technology will expand and be capable of feeding the entire nation.

Agrarian scientist Choi Kyu-hong is still sorting out more basic challenges.

Int: Choi Kyu-hong, RDA (English)
“The plant factory requires a lot of energy, the light energy and the heating and cooling energy. So we provide the heating or cooling energy using geothermal systems. We adopted the solar cell system to provide light source energies, but we are still (only) provide 15 percent of the total energy”

Choi adds his team still faces many challenges:

Int: Choi Kyu-hong, RDA (English)
“We are still (in) the research state, its take some time to make a commercial plant factories. We are firstly trying to find out the optimum wavelength of light”

Choi says the problem is that different plants grow at different speeds, depending on the light’s color and wavelength.

But even though the government hasn’t perfected vertical farming technology yet, some in the private sector are already putting it to use. Inside this Lotte Mart, a supermarket franchise in Seoul, lettuce grows under the lights of this small vertical farm.

Store mangers say produce grown in this facility has extra benefits for customers.

Int: Kim Chang-jo, Lotte Mart
(Korean) “We are the first super market to install a vertical farm. We hope that it will draw attention to environmental concerns. The plants are affordable and no pesticides were used, so its healthier for our customers”

Kim says the vertical farm lettuce costs the same as lettuce grown the old fashioned way. But some analysts say that all the lights and heating systems required to operate a vertical farm is just too expensive to make it a viable solution for food insecurity.

Int: Park Hwan-il, SERI
(English) “Vertical farming costs too much. / Even though the productivity in vertical farming is very high, very good, but it does not have the merit in price or marketing advantage at all”

Back at the Suwon experimental vertical farm, scientists admit they still have a long way to go. The Rural Development Administration’s Lee Hye jin gives a rough time frame.

Int: Lee Hye-jin, RDA
(Korean) “It might take at least five more years of research to make progress on these obstacles. Then vertical farms might be ready for commercial use”

The South Korean scientists say that once all the problems are resolved, vertical farms won't just have to stop at three-stories. The sky is the limit.

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The "After Peace" Project
Worldwide
By Mais Istanbuli
08 Jul 2013

The long way towards peace starts just after the signature of the peace agreements. This is when the complex and difficult process of building peace, memory, truth, resolution and justice for all the victims begins.

The documentaries of the ‘After Peace' project seek to analyze and explain different paths taken by various countries who suffered an armed conflict in the last quarter of the 20th century. Researchers, activists for peace and reconciliation, victims, lawyers and educators expose what has been done and ignored in their countries since the conflict ended, and talk about the long road to reconciliation.

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Shark finning: A Cruel Dish is Disapp...
Hong Kong
By maltekol
30 Jun 2013

The trade in Shark Fins has declined in Hong Kong.

Hong Kong is the world's shark fin capital, where about half of all fins are traded. But according to figures from the Hong Kong government imports last year of Shark fins dropped by a third.

For most Chinese, eating shark's fin still remains a status symbol. But as Malte Kollenberg reports young people are starting to view it differently.

This is how Shark fins are ‘harvested….
The fins are cut off a living shark and then the torso is thrown back into the ocean. Most of these fins from countries like Indonesia end up in Hong Kong.In 2008 around 10.000 tons of fins passed the city’s ports according to environmental organization Oceana.

INTV (English): Stanley Shea, Activist with French founded Bloom Association
“In Hong Kong in the old times they provided banquets which is all settled by the restaurant and the fin is always included in the banquet. So it leaves the customer, they actually have no choice to remove the dishes from the banquet set.”

But things started to change three years ago.
Under pressure from Environmental groups Governments in Hong Kong and Mainland China have stopped serving shark fins at official banquets. And big corporations as well as hotel chains are announcing they will take shark fin soup off their menus.

INTV (English): Stanley Shea, Activist with French founded Bloom Association
“We have been talking to corporate and also hotels and restaurants. And we found in Hong Kong now awareness has been increased and many hotels and restaurants now offer something alternative in the banquet menus so people can choose not to have it.”

According to the World Wildlife Fund, appetite for the fins and other shark-related products has led to some shark species falling in numbers by 60-70%.
But in March this year five more species of Shark were added to the Washington Convention, ensuring endangered species are not threatened by overfishing and trade.This means tradingof eightshark speciesis not possible without official documentation anymore.
Here is the Sheung Wan District …. Shark Fins are still openly being sold.

But small shops merchants say business lately is slow and they are reluctant to talk about shark fins on camera…it has become a sensitive topic.But not far away at restaurant Lin Heung Kui staff will still proudly tell you that shark fin soup is on the menu.

INTV(Cantonese): Unidentified employee in Restaurant
“We prepare and serve the fins in lots of ways - with a clear soup or with shredded chicken. It is definitely more popular at night. We offer an especially cheap deal at $88 at the moment, but sometimes people come to get more expensive dishes.”

Shark fin soup has been the food of the rich and wealthy for hundreds of years in China. Consumption of the fins is said to increase health.

But anthropologist Veronica Mak says generational change is taking place.

INTV (English): Veronica Mak, Anthropologist at the Chinese University of Hong Kong
“Not consuming shark fins becomes a signifier to show you are a social responsible person. In the past people made shark fins a signifier in a banquet, but nowadays this signifier changes.”

Activists believe that awareness and education is the key to change consumer behavior. And less demand for shark fins here will result in fewer sharks left for dead in the world’s oceans.

Video footage of fishermen "harvesting" fins is courtesy of Greenpeace. The footage was licensed from Greenpeace to be included into the video report.

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Today's weapons trade in Aleppo
Aleppo, Syria
By salem_rizk
14 Jun 2013

Recently, weapon stores that sell and repair arms have been sprouting up in Aleppo, Syria. These stores are opening in rebel held areas in Syria and, due to the lack of regulation, are further destabilizing the fragile security situation. The omnipresence of arbitrary militias in civilian areas is creating discomfort among citizens. Citizens are demanding the Free Syrian Army and Sharia authority find a solution and enact laws that govern the sales of weapons in the area.

Shop owners have stated that most of their clients are rebels. They mention that their weapons supply comes from the Free Syrian Army. Members of the Free Syrian Army often barter their weapons for ammunition. Furthermore, some members of the Assad regime sell their weapons to civilians who then sell them back to the shops. In general, most of the arms that are available in the shops are Russian made.

First interview is with Abu Mohammed a weapons sales man 38 years
Second interview is with Abu Ibrahim, a weapon sales man, 36 years

Third interview is with Abdullah Karmo, a civillian, 33 years

Fourth interview is with Moustapha Amro, a civillian, 22 years

-----Transcription-----

00:30 Are they here?
00:31 Yes, they are.
00:32 How much is this one?
00:33 75 Syrian Pounds.
00:39 Most of my clients are Free Syrian Army soldiers. They gain weapons in the battles and exchange them for bullets because of the lack of ammunition.

Interview 1:
00:56 Regarding civilians, when they ask for weapons, I don't sell to them unless they have a permission slip from Al Sharia authority.
Even if the person is an FSA soldier, I ask about him before I sell him anything, or he needs to give me a paper that states which brigade he fights for.

Interview 2:
01:23 Here, we fix weapons as a service.
01:33 Some thugs sell weapons to civilians. so we get the weapons from them.
01:40: We have all types of Russian weapons, Russian bullets, Russian BKC, we have a variety of Russian weapons.

Interviews 3:
02:32 The city of Aleppo is witnessing a spread of weapons in a chaotic and random way. It's even a bit weird and strange. This is a very bad phenomenon, which is also unethical.
02:43 It's extremely messy, the way weapons are being spread.
02:48 There are many shops that sell weapons now and these shops are not legally organized.
02:54 To be able to control this, we must have a mechanism to monitor the process of selling and buying weapons, with both brigades and sellers.
03:06 Al Sharia authority should have a role in controlling this trade, and establish laws to organize the random spread of weapons.

Interview 4:
03:15 This phenomenon is not good at all, but as long as we are in a war situation, we must have these shops.
03:22 We need them because it helps us. If the army attacks us, we can defend ourselves with these weapons.
03:31 I know it' bad, but we have no other choice. What can we do ?

----- Arabic Description------

انتشرت في الفترة الاخيرة محلات بيع الأسلحة و تصليحها في مدينة حلب وباقي المناطق المحررة وسبّب ذلك حالة فلتان أمني.

و يلاحظ وجود المسلحين في أماكن تواجد المدنين مما خلق حالة انزعاج لدى المواطنين و يطالب المواطنين الجيش الحر والهيئة الشرعية بإيجاد حل لفوضى السلاح وإيجاد قوانين تنظّم بيع الأسلحة ويقول أغلب أصحاب محلات بيع السلاح أن أغلب زبائنهم من الجيش الحر وأغلب السلاح الذي لديهم يأتي من خلال الجيش الحر، حيث يقوم عناصر الجيش الحر بعملية التبادل مع صاحب المحل يعطونه سلاح فيعطيهم ذخيرة و في بعض الحالات يقوم الشبيحة ببيع السلاح للمدنيين فيقوم المدنيين ببيعه لمحلات بيع السلاح. و إن أغلب السلاح المتواجد في السوق هو سلاح روسي

المقابلة الاولى ابو محمد با ئع سلاح عمره ثمان وثلاثين سنة

المقابلة الثانية بائع ابوابراهيم عمره ستة وثلاثين سنة

المقابلة الثالثة مواطن عبد الله كرمو عمره ثلاث وثلاثين سنة

المقابلة الرابعة المواطن مصطفى عمره اثنان وعشرون سنة

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Four Floors In Bielany
Warsaw, Poland
By Kirk Ellingham
21 May 2013

Chechen Refugees in Warsaw

Kirk Ellingham

http://kellingham.viewbook.com/portfolio/four_floors_in_bielany

Every day dozens of Chechens try to escape the Putin-proclaimed happy paradise in Chechnya by entering the European Union illegally via the border with Ukraine or Belarus. Despite the news of general peace and prosperity widely circulated by the news media in the Chechen Republic, more and more people dream of leaving the allegedly problem-free Chechnya.

Each time I returned to the rundown refugee centre on the edge of Warsaw that house nearly 300 mainly Chechen refugees to Poland, I found it harder and harder to get a grip both ethically and photographically on their situation.
Some of the residents had moved out into Warsaw apartments, some had been repatriated home; others had just disappeared into the E.U, especially if their asylum claims had been rejected. Some may have even returned to Chechnya voluntary, even perhaps to fight in the insurgence. Often if they had been refused status to stay in Poland or elsewhere the militant young felt they were left with little choice, but to return back to Chechnya to face violent reprisals or join the Islamic insurgence in the Caucasus Mountains.
It became a confusing place but with so many kind and courageous people letting me into their lives to photograph them I felt I needed to continue document the transient and desperate nature of their existence on the four floors of Bielany, the reasons they fled their homeland, in an original way at least.
So how could I transpose these notes and photographs into a viable project? The stories they told me ranged from horrific tales of torture to ones of simply trying to rejoin family members who had left Chechnya years before, during the two wars.
So I began to present the images with my written notes, thoughts and also the pictures the children made for me whilst wandering the cold corridors waiting to interview and photograph their parents.
I often felt like a useless recorder of tragedy and after one visit I felt despair at being only able being able to record these courageous peoples images and voices with a view to just using the work for my MA and not to implement any real change for their situation in Poland. I destroyed my first notebook in a Warsaw youth hostel in anger one night but later I fished its torn remains back from the kitchen bin.
A Bielany resident who I had spoken to about my frustrations had told me the next day even though it may sound clichéd that “It didn’t matter, at least you are listening to us, at least you are here trying to understand us, to document us” this helped waive my doubts about continuing the project, but I still feel that a photojournalist without empathy or ethics is only taking, often not helping; I hope I can give something back even if its only a testament to the fact that the Chechen people were here, in a small part of Warsaw waiting in a bureaucratic limbo as to whether they could continue there journey or travel back to a bleeding homeland.

I plan to make this project into a multimedia piece including all the notebooks, text and audio as well as a finished book and exhibition

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Bedouin Women Struggling through Trad...
Arish, Egypt
By zeer news
21 May 2013

Background:

The place of women within the tribal system of the Bedouins of North Sinai is very restricted and anchored to very specific traditions. The situation of Bedouin women, in fact, is connected to the tribal structure. In the Bedouin culture, the status of families is determined by their size. Women are thus both venerated and marginalized to the role of "birth givers". 
Therefore, Bedouin women are obliged to marry as soon as possible and they are subject not only to a strict cultural code, but also to a strict sexual code of conduct. Each individual, through his action, represents his family as a whole in the society. Each shameful or not acceptable conduct will damage the honor of the entire family. 
Being subject to these strict codes and rules, only a very small minority of Bedouin women have access to the public sphere and to social life outside the domestic walls.
In this reportage it will be shown the voices of both Bedouin and Egyptian women and men, that are fighting for a social change for Bedouin women, and that explain the situation for women in Sinai.

Selwa el Hirsh, an active woman of the Billi tribe of Rabaa (near Bir el Abd) shows her struggle in trying to enable Bedouin women to integrate in the economical sphere of their families through handicraft. She explains the importance of women in participating in the economy of the family.
Mona Barhoum, is an activist in Rafah, engaged on women and development issues. She gave more then 5000 ID to Bedouin women and she run as a candidate in the last parliamentary elections.
Sheikh Arafat, a sufi sheikh of the tribe of the Sawarka, is the director of the Al Gora Society (in al Gora, in the nearby of Sheikh Zwaid), an NGO working on human rights and development in Sinai.
Said Hytaiek is a Bedouin activist of Sheikh Zwaid, explaining how the policies of the last 30 years on Sinai didn't bring any progress on the women issues in the region.
Sheikh Goma el Tarrabin, a member of the most facultous families of the Tarrabin, and very famous smuggler, explains ( only audio) the traditions and marriage in the tribal system.
Sheikh Abd el Hendy, an Orfi judge (the traditional Bedouin legislation) of Chabaana, in the nearby of Sheikh Zwaid explains the legislative status of women in the Bedouin traditions.

Shotlist:

00:00 - 01:00 Selwa El Hirsh: “In the name of Allah my name is Selwa el Hirsh, a leader for the women of North Sinai. I am a Bedouin, the tribe of Baradeya, family el-Hirsh.
We have here six places: Bir el Abd, Sinai is Bir el Abd, el Arish, this is the capital, Sheikh Zwaid, Rafah, el-Hassala, Nekhel. We have six areas in North Sinai. Women in the past were very weak, she tried to cultivate to help her husband to grow her boys, girls in the house. There is no learning, no culture, nothing, only she was growing some sheep in the house.”

Images: man on the beach of el-Arish, el Arish University, militaries walking on the beach of el Arish, Chabaana (Sheikh Zwaid )peach trees, palm trees of the beach of El Arish, rooftops and building of el Arish, Orfi tribunal in Chabaana, fruit trees in Bir el Abd, woman with child in her balcony, children playing in Rabaa village, sheep in cage in Chaabana.

01:00- 02:04 Sheikh Arafat (director of Al-Gora Society): “Despite all the services we do for women, there is still a lot of challenges in Sinai community because of the uneducated ones and because the women they cannot finish their education in so many places in this region. And the other places the girls leaving school in the primary school because there are no preparatory or high schools for them. At some other places they stop at high schools because there are no universities and sometimes the university is too far and not easy to reach.”

Images: Bedouin men in peach trees in Chabaana, Flyer of Al-Gora Society activities on women, two Bedouin women in traditional clothes and baby, particular of the mother holding the baby, Bedouin women and the baby, village of Sheikh Zwaid with girls and donkey chariot.

02:04- 02:34 Said Hytaiek (activist):
“The women in Sinai suffer a lot because she lives in a men community that does not believe in the woman goal nor the woman rights. And she lives in a community that puts her role only inside the house.”

Images: Women with Niqab and baby walking in the street, main street of El Arish.

02:34- 03:11 Goma Tarrabin (Tarrabin rich man and smuggler):
“My name is Goma Abu Sahba Tarabin tribe, Sinai, Egyptian citizen like any other Egyptian citizen, Muslim, Arab and we have our custom and tradition in our community that we cannot change. The women’s state in Sinai is not like anywhere else. And because of our customs and traditions that we have for long time, from our grand-grandparents, we can’t change the women state in 10 or 20 years.”

Images: Bedouin men and children in a Bedouin hut on the beach of el Arish, children in the hut, beach of el Arish, Bedouin man preparing Shisha.

03:11– 03:38 Selwa el Hirsh:
“We have here rules, in Sinai, between the tribes. We have rules. No one from the other tribes can touch me. Ok? We have rules here, but now no one care about the rules, women not safe, families not safe, the adults not safe.”

03:38- 04:11 Goma Tarrabin:
“one of the problems women faces in Sinai is education, marriage, even in growing up their children and sometimes the husband gets married more than two or three times. The average of getting married in the Bedouin community starts from 16.”

Images: Bedouin women with children, two Bedouin women (one working) with children, Bedouin teenager girls preparing tea on the seaside.

04:11- 05:39 Judge Abd el Hady (Orfi judge):
“I am el haj abdel hady atteia hassan, from Ashira el Mansoureya, I am an Orfi judge. And one of the most important people in Sinai. The Orfi law is when the people have some problems and they have to sit with Orfi to solve the disputes. The society gives to women a lot of options, a lot of freedom, for ex is she can go to all the houses, so now she is a strange person there, so the father of the house deals with her like if he was her owner. If she wants to divorce she can. If she wants rights, give her the rights. She goes to Massaid and Massaid take a lot of care of her.”

Images: particular of hands taking a cigarette, inside the Bedouin Tribunal, men listening to the judge, three Bedouin men in the tribunal listening to the judge, portrait of one man listening to the judge, portrait of another Bedouin smoking a cigarette and listening to the judge, outside of the Tribunal judge talking with a man, zoom on judge talking with the man.

05:39- 06:59 Selwa el Hirsh:
“Some of us(women) are educated, and we have a job. But the others women here don't have a job, and she wants to help her husband, she wants to make something in the family, for her family. These productions help the family to have many money, so she is trying her husband to bring money to her, she want to increase the income of the family. Our grandmothers give us this: When I was a child my mother gave me one piece and she asked me to look at her and to teach me how to do it. Since the childhood until she becomes an hold woman. All her life. If she increases the income, the Governorate increases its income, the country, all Egypt, increases its income. Our economy is low now, we want to raise our economy, by cultivating Sinai, by these productions, by make factories.”

Images: particular of hands of woman working on handicraft, Bedouin women working, other Bedouin woman sitting beside her husband while she works, handicraft clothes in the trade show in Arish University, Bedouin women laughing with her husband, Bedouin family sitting all together under the shadow of a tree while women are working, old Bedouin woman, market in Arish, manequins of women clothes.

06:59- 07:25 Said Hytaiek:
“ we want to have a civil country to give the woman all her rights, even Mubarak did not commit on the rights of the women and the state organizations they have never given any solutions to solve all the women’s problem in Sinai, or even all over Egypt.”

Images: Arish downtown, woman in Niqab with two daughters crossing the street, Arish downtown, two women (one veiled one in Niqab) with their children.

07:25- 07:48 Selwa el Hirsh:
“Hosni Mubarak government and Morsi government, all of them don't care about Sinai. They (the women) are trying, in politics, to have places in politics in Sinai, on the TV, they want to appear to speak about problems in Sinai.”

Images: Selwa presenting handicraft products made by Bedouin women, Selwa talking with a man.

07:48- 08:56 Mona Barhoum (political activist):
“The situation of women in Sinai, is the same like all the Egyptian women. They got backward in everything that they gained before the revolution, like their membership in the local committees and making the decisions.
The main issue is that there is no faith in woman role in the political life by the political parties. And she is very welcome when she is voting, but she is not when she is a member. As Sinai people now we ask the actual government to invest and develop Sinai.”

Images: Mona walking in the entrance of the court, Mona with her cat, portrait of Bedouin woman in traditional clothes, two Bedouin women with kids in the garden of the house, Bedouin woman eating fruits from a tree, Mona going outside of her house.

08:56- 09:10 Selwa el Hirsh:
“Everything is related to the woman, Woman is member of this society. If the society is good the woman will be good, if the society is bad, the woman will be bad. Everything is back to us.”

Images : Bedouin girls playing a game on the sand.

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Tunisia's Tourism Sector Looks for Al...
Tunis, Tunisia
By Mohamed Haddad
14 May 2013

A Video Report Done By: Sarah Mersch & Mohamed Haddad

Tunisia has long been a favorite destination for Western tourists. Since the revolution, prices went down, but so did the number of visitors - a disaster for the vital sector of Tunisian economy. 400,000 of Tunisia’s 10.5 million inhabitants depend on tourism, which makes up seven percent of the country’s GDP. Despite this, tourism professionals are looking for alternatives, whether it be wellness, cultural or hiking trips.

This is an international version, voice over + original soundbites are on the left track, ambient sound on the right.

Sidi Bou Said, a picturesque village over the hills of Tunis. Once a must for every visitor of the country, the small town is feeling the decline in tourism since the political turnover.

Mohamed Ben Ameur still opens his little souvenir stall every day, but the craftsman struggles to make a living.

SOUNDBITE Mohamed Ben Ameur, craftsman [ar]

There is nobody. Look, it’s Saturday and it’s empty. As soon as the big cruise ships leave, the street gets empty again. That’s what the minister said as well, there are less reservations than last year.

Half a million Tunisians and almost 10% of national income depend directly on tourism. Since the revolution, reservations have gone down by almost 15%.

Hammamet, an hour south of Tunis. It once used to be the hotspot of beach tourism, but the Europeans looking for cheap sun have gone elsewhere. Even though a week of all inclusive sells at 200 Euros.

Many of the three and four star hotels haven’t been renovated in a long time and struggle to keep the standard up. A third of the establishments should close for the sector to rejuvenate, professionals tell us off the record.

For the 4 star hotel Le Sultan, the situation is difficult, but the manager Mehdi Allani tries to keep up a good service. 120 employees are taking care of one hundred clients. An investment for a better future the owner still believes in. Mehdi Allani wants the restaurant setting to be top notch, even though yesterday, only twenty people ate here.

SOUNDBITE Mehdi Allani, Vice-President, Le Sultan hotel [fr]

Today, we are living a crisis. The priority should be reactivity. But this means being very fast. But we still function slowly, we’re in the phase of ‘Ah, we don’t have the money. We should... or maybe not...’. rather than acting quickly. [...] Our competitors are very reactive. If we want to compete on eye level, we need a lot of communication, a lot of events and most of all, reactivity. We need to be hyper-creative and hyper-fast.

After the revolution, Tunisia’s authorities have realized that its prior focus on cheap beach tourism is long outdated and especially vulnerable to political instability.

But the sector is still waiting for concrete initiatives by the authorities, Mehdi Allani says. He voluntarily works in a group of officials and tourism professionals to improve the situation of the industry and promote new concepts.

SOUNDBITE Mehdi Allani, Vice President, Le Sultan hotel [fr]

If we speak about the fact that there was a revolution, it happened in Tunisia, but not at the Tunisian Tourism Office, nor at the ministry. They still need to work on changing the habits, being creative.

Allani wants to go ahead and give a good example. Next to the Sultan, he’s constructing a second, even fancier hotel. Looking for alternatives, some hotel owners are increasingly focusing on golf and spa tourists, a rich clientele that is willing to pay for good service.

At the Hasdrubal, one of the few 5 star hotels in the region, the situation is very much the same as at the rest of Hammamet. Less than 20% of the capacity of this hotel with more than 400 beds is used in late May. But the Hasdrubal features something special:

SOUNDBITE Talha Husseini, General Director, Hasdrubal Thalassa hotel [fr]

This presidential suite is the biggest of the world. It measures 1540 m², features an interior and an exterior swimming pool, five sleeping rooms,....

The Salambo suite, where stars, starlets and politicians once came and gone has been deserted since the political turnover. The hotel opens it up only for TV crews. Nobody sleeps here anymore for 5000 Euros a night, neither Bashar Al Assad, nor Algerian president Bouteflika or Mariah Carey. Talha Husseini is in a hurry to quickly lead us through the suite. Other clients are to arrive soon - at the normal hotel, which has become the Hasdrubal’s main business.

SOUNDBITE Talha Husseini, General Director, Hasdrubal Thalassa hotel [fr]

The kind of clients that use the presidential suite are really part of the upper class. And they prefer not to come as long as the political situation in Tunisia is not really stable. Honestly speaking, 2011 and 2012 weren’t great.

The days of glory of the Hasdrubal have passed. The suite is mentioned in the Guinness book as the biggest of the world. Even though the award features big on the website, it fails to attract the clients the hotel once had.

SOUNDBITE Talha Husseini, General Director, Hasdrubal Thalassa hotel [fr]

When the owner of the hotel was building it, everybody told him that he was crazy. There were no clients for this kind of luxury tourism in Tunisia at the time. So he had to develop the clientele.

The director remains silent about the exact number of guests currently visiting the hotel. Most have been shied away by bad press and security concerns. The few who come enjoy the calm and empty beaches.
This british tourist is on his first visit to Tunisia. He appreciates the increased security measures

SOUNDBITE British tourist [en]

This morning, there were policemen going along the beach in buggies. There is always a risk, wherever you go in the world. I think the Tunisian government has seen that there is an interest and a need to address any concerns and they have dealt with that.

As the Hasdrubal once brought a new category of visitors to Tunisia, tourism professionals today try to develop another new clientele. The Northern region of Kef, once the wheat chamber of the Romans: tourists
have always been a rare sight here. Today, there are even less than before the revolution. But the population tries to promote local initiatives and to attract new clients. A cave serves local painter Ammar Belghit as a workshop. It could be one stop on a tour that takes visitors around the region, from hot springs to Roman ruins and the historical city of Kef. For Ahmed Trabelsi, the revolution was a blessing.

SOUNDBITE Ahmed Trabelsi, [exact function / association]

We are a lot more flexible. There’s no police car anymore following us around to see who these people are and what they are doing at Ammar’s grotto.

Before the revolution, to organise even a small hiking tour with a group of foreigners, guides needed almost a dozen permits from local and national authorities. Now they are free to show the treasuries of a country with rich history, which has a lot more to offer than just beaches.

Conscious that alternative tourism will not save the whole industry, the locals hope to at least attract a customer base which is less vulnerable to political hiccups.

In the meantime, the beaches are awaiting another quiet summer.

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First Disabled Man To Climb St. Cathe...
Cairo, Egypt
By zeer news
11 May 2013

Mazen, the first disabled person to climb St Catherine mountain in Sinai, promoting rights for disabled in Egypt

Background:

Mazen is the first disabled person to climb Mount Saint Catherine in Sinai, to promote rights for the handicapped in Egypt. Mazen contracted polio when he was 3 years old, while he was escaping Iraq with his family during the First Gulf War.

According to World Health Organization’s statistics, 10% of Egypt’s total population suffers from physical or mental disabilities. The 1975 Rehabilitation of Disabled Persons law didn't bring progress to the living conditions of the disabled. During the two years that followed the revolution, with 18 months of military rule followed by the Muslim Brotherhood’s government, Egypt’s handicapped population, estimated at over 8 million, continue to face more of the same problems. The precarious and difficult situation in a city like Cairo, one of the most chaotic in the world due to a substantial lack of infrastructure, is unfortunately only one of the many problems handicapped people face in Egypt. A lack of rights, health care and increased social marginalization inspired Mazen, who has been handicapped since the age of 3, to get involved in political activism, prompting him to join the 6th of April movement in 2010.

In November 2012, during the Mohamed Mahmoud clashes, Mazen lost his close friend and companion of the 6th of April movement, Gika. Since then, he decided to change his methods of protest, and to start a more responsible and peaceful activism campaign through symbolic actions.

Three months ago, he completed the first of several actions, climbing the Keops pyramid in Giza. On the 6th of April 2013, for the anniversary of the movement, he decided to climb the 1586 m and 750 stairs of mount Saint Catherine in Sinai.

Shots:
00:00 - 00: 44 sec intro VO

Mazen is the first disabled person to climb mount Sinai, promoting rights for handicapped people in Egypt.

According to World Health Organization, 10% of Egypt’s population, over 8 million people suffer from a disability. The Rehabilitation of Disabled Persons law of 1975 didn't improve their living conditions. In Egypt little attention is paid to the difficulties of the handicapped, especially in Cairo, one of the most chaotic cities in the world, there is a shortage of infrastructure to the assist their mobility. This is compounded by the lack of rights, poor health care and social marginalization. Mazen, handicapped since the age of 3, was inspired to get involved in political activism, before the revolution.

00:44 – 01:39 interview : presentation and problems of handicapped people in Egypt

“I am Mazen Hamza, I am 26 years old. I was born in 1987 in Iraq. I came in Egypt during the First Gulf War. I contracted the polio when I was three years old because of the vaccination. ”

“The problems that handicapped people suffer here in Egypt have been the reason why I decided to enter political activism, in order to send a message to the entire world, that handicapped people have to be integrated into society. We have problems in all aspects, in transportation, in education, in work, in housing, in airplanes, and mostly in the treatment we received by the government. I mean the government does not know how to treat handicapped people.”

01:40 – 02:03 political activism VO 6th of April / sit-in of 6th of April in front of the Ministry of Interior

Mazen became a political activist in February 2011 when he joined the 6th of April movement, the most active civil rights movements in Egypt. He first participated in debates, demonstrations and sit-ins.

In November 2012, during the clash with Security Forces and the Military Government, Mazen lost his close friend Gika, a fellow activist. This inspired him to begin a campaign of peaceful activism through symbolic demonstrations.

02:04- 02:47 Interview talk about gika / inside Gika's family house

“The death of Gika influenced us a lot. He was a boy that put a beautiful energy within us. Climbing the Cheope Pyramid has been only the beginning of many activities in urban, historical and religious places. We started by climbing the pyramid and it has had a lot of success, we heard good feedback from the people. I am not speaking about the public’s opinion, but from the other activists.”

02:48- 03:18 VO actions: Saint Catherine

Three months ago, Mazen completed the first of his demonstrations, climbing the Haram Cheope, the great pyramid of Giza. Then, on April 6, for the seventh anniversary of the movement, he climbed the 1586 m of Mount Sinai including the 750 “stairs of penitence”. In the Christian, Muslim and Jewish traditions, Mount Sinai is where Moses received the Ten Commandments. Overcoming his physical limitations, Mazen reached the summit in order to raise awareness for the disabled population and to remember those who died for human rights in Egypt.

03:18- 05:12 climbing St Cathrine, reaching the summit

05:12- 05: 27 interview St. Cathrine

“I would like the world to be aware of what’s going on in Egypt. For this reason I climbed St Catherine mountain, where Moses spoke with his God, to bring his speech all around the world, and I am doing the same thing to make people care about the handicapped women, children, and society and in general human rights.”

05: 28 Mazen Screaming the name of “Gika”.

Other text (Arabic translation):

“When I found out that there were young people ready for revolution, I joined them for months to take down the regime, and change the system. After two years I feel that nothing has changed. We have a new president, but the same system, so I tried to be different.

I started to work with the movement by participating in demonstrations and other activities. When I found out about the 6th of April movement, I joined it immediately. I joined the movement on the anniversary of the clashes of Mohammed Mahmud. In the Moquattam group, I was just an activist, but after I became responsible for social policies. I joined many events, especially for handicapped people’s rights.”

I attend a lot of conference to spread their voices everywhere, and to raise awareness of the problems of disabled people.
I tried to see the system separately from religious or historic dogma. I would like the world to be aware of what’s going on in Egypt. For this reason I climbed St Catherine mountain, where Moses spoke with his God, to bring his speech all around the world. And I am doing the same thing to make people care about the handicapped, women, children, and society and in general human rights,

We have a problem with the system. Politicians don’t listen to our demands, but we will make them listen and change their policies to how young people want them.

I am a citizen who sees that people will soon organize themselves to bring a real change. Tomorrow will be better, but now we still need to spend a lot of energy, even if we already spent a lot. That’s why we are climbing St. Catherine mountain, we already climbed 2350 meters and we only have to climb 750 stairs. That is the fight with myself against the system and the entire world, and I will do more, or my efforts will be vane.

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A Story of a Syrian Village
Homs, Syria
By Smart Media
07 May 2013

Oyoun Hsain is a small village located in the northeastern countryside of Homs with a population of less than 4000 people.

The area was not subjected to either armed or peaceful revolutionary movements, but it fell victim to shelling and other destructive measures.

A massacre was on the verge of occurring, but the Free Syrian Army intervened and stopped it by evacuating the villagers away.

However, many people were killed due to the continuous shelling by warplanes, artillery and tanks from the battalion next to the village. Mercenaries also broke into the village several times and killed people. In addition to that, more than 120 people were kidnapped. Until this moment, nobody knows anything about what happened to those kidnapped people.

The film shows the destruction in the village after the evacuation of its inhabitants.

The buildings’ ruins embed the village’s memory, the people’s properties and their children’s food.

The film authenticates the story of the village. The film is a call for humanity sent to the neighboring villages, where mercenaries live in and still support the regime. It reminds them of the past years when they lived peacefully together; when all the sects in Syria lived in peaceful coexistence.

The film aims to wake up the remnant of humanity and mercy in neighbors’ hearts; the friends yesterday and the executioners today.

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"Unification Brigade"
Aleppo, Syria
By mittome
05 May 2013

After the use of heavy weaponry by regime forces in Syria, the rebels have decided to unify several militant factions under the "Thowar Al Khanadeq" banner - the rebels of the trenches.

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Hollywood Versus Nollywood, Trailer
Lagos, Nigeria
By Preditor Push
04 May 2013

Hollywood Contra Nollywood By Tee Jay Dan
APRIL 23, 2013 2 COMMENTS

“Critics should be active participants…propound and participate.” BM Dzukogi.

Nothing said in praise of Nollywood, in whatever fashion or design will invalidate the fact that the industry is threatened with poor funding, low quality production, technical ineptitude, piracy and blighted distribution channels. But we must not dwell on the many sins of Nollywood. We should appraise the industry; analyze her with the genuine hope of rediscovering her lost beauty. We must, stakeholders and consumers alike, collectively and jealously trade ideas and criticism; serve as a galaxy of souls to our very own motion pictures enterprise. I am playing my quota by writing this article in hopes that every reader will play their role by spreading the word until the identified defects are righted!

Here’s a little education on how a proper film industry functions. Top on the chain is THE MONEY nearly bracketed by THE FINDERS.

THE MONEY is further categorized into FILM and TV. The FILM category consists of major studios such as Universal, Disney, Warner Brothers e.t.c, whereas the TV category refers to Cable Networks such ABC, FOX, CBS e.t.c. Like every other business, these studios and Networks are structured with CEOs, Presidents, Creative Executives, Assistants and Business Affairs Executives.

THE FINDERS literally refers to professionals who find talents/stories for the studios/networks. The Finders serves as mediators between studios/networks and the products. Since studio execs are too preoccupied to read through heaps of specs/scripts these guys handle the hunt job. They function just like literary agents in the business of publishing.

It is the collation of these two factions; THE MONEY and THE FINDERS that makes up what is known as Hollywood. There is more to the solid structure of Hollywood but this will suffice for lack of space. Sadly, Nollywood strives on the exact the opposites of these dictates! There is no single Studio in Nigeria! The absence of a skeletal framework is Nollywood’s first and major problem. With a functional structure in place, Nollywood will look sexier to potential investors as investment returns will become guaranteed – only then can we bury the old days of financially constrained productions.

It is funny how the lots of producers in Nollywood believe funding to be the most pressing need that must be remedied if the industry is to be revitalized. They often find out albeit painfully so that even with the billions of the world they cannot make mind blowing movies with only money. In this business of ours it is believed that a good film could be made with a bad cast and poor production but no good film can be made with a bad story. There is no gainsaying the fact that our home videos are pretty predictable because the stories made into films are stereotypes! Any good screenwriter could easily hash out two or more stories from a typical Nollywood flick! Do you feel mentally exhausted after seeing a Nollywood film? This is because your brain is busy trying to patch together the unrelated stories/scenes in our home videos. Our producers need to pay closer attention to stories before they give the green light. Here’s an assignment: watch a Chinese, Bollywood or Hollywood movie without the sound then watch a Nollywood film in the same manner – watch the Nollywood clip first if you like. Then return here and share your experience. Please pick films you have not seen before and remember to mute the sound. Yes, that is the power of a good story of the lack thereof!

Recently I joined camp with Balogun Omo Oba Dayo of Ravernsbourne UK; a Nigerian Filmmaker based in the United Kingdom. In the course of our joint venture I learned a great deal. Nigerians making good movies are either independent producers or our brethren in the Diaspora. Movies like DR. BELLO, LAST FLIGHT TO ABUJA, TWO BRIDES AND A BABY, THE LOST NUMBER by Tony Abulu, Obi Emelonye, Blessing Egbe and Kester Nsirim respectively are clear examples. Oh, there are three kinds of filmmakers in Nigeria; the Nollywood filmmakers, Nigerian Filmmakers in the Diaspora and the Independent filmmakers. It is therefore out of good faith that I propose a conscious romance between these three factions of Filmmakers of Nigerian origin.

Funding is a crucial part of filmmaking especially in Nigeria. Here’s a bitter truth. Over 80% of filmmakers in Nigeria source for production money from marketers in Alaba. These marketers go as far as dictating names for films without reading the scripts! Have you noticed some Nollywood flick with a title that clearly conflicts with the storyline? Now you know why. A similar percentage of the technical crew are a bunch of ‘trial and error’ apprentices who self-graduated or were actually sent forth by their ‘masters’ to wreck Nollywood the more. The camera man you hire for your birthday today might be shooting Nollywood’s next ‘block buster’ tomorrow if he knows a producer or if a friend of his wins a lottery and decides to make a movie. As much as lack of funds is a problem, industry veterans should sign up for professional courses. It doesn’t take a lifetime!

We still suffer some shamefully from poor sound and picture quality in Nollywood. Take the just concluded AMAA 2013 event for instance.

Finally, because Nollywood churns out thousands of movies annually is not a yardstick to say it is without blemish. Popularity isn’t necessarily prosperity so goes the saying. A female Nollywood apologist argued that the industry guys are making big bucks alright hence do not need to up their game. This is laughable. See, in Nigeria pirates earn more than the filmmakers. Forget the paparazzi, safe for some side ‘runs’ our movie stars will be dying in penury. To say Nollywood is fine as it is is a terrible misconception. Let’s have a working structure then we can attract investors. Let’s build a tight knit industry and engage in collaborative ventures so we can make superb movies. Deal with Nigerians in the Diaspora, tackle piracy and pirates head on, mend the rift in AGN, and awaken DGN and SWG from slumber then watch Nollywood bloom.

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Fracking Up Fares
Fares, Aswan
By zeer news
01 May 2013

BACKGROUND INFORMATION

In 2009, the company DANA GAS (UAE) started shale gas explorations near Fares, a small agricultural village on the West Bank of the Nile, 75 km North of Aswan.
The company employed a controversial technique known as hydraulic fracturing or "fracking", which uses a mixture of pressurized water and chemicals to release natural gas trapped in the shale rock. 
The village was soon flooded with groundwater and in January 2013 orchards, crops and houses were destroyed. 
Residents do not have results from the water tests that the government was supposed to carry out.  In addition to ecological concerns, property owners whose land was affected have received very little compensation from the gas extraction company (Dana Gas) or from the Egyptian government. The clean up efforts promised by the government have come to a halt and it is not known if and when they will resume. 

The case of Fares, however, differs from other documented cases of damages caused by fracking. 

The flooding is believed to be the result of seismic testings, a straightforward operation conducted prior to the extraction to determine the size of the shale. 

Therefore, this case shows:

  • how monitoring of the fracking operations --known to be possibly harmful for water reserves -- was poor or non-existent in an area close to the Nile

  • media usually focuses on fracking's direct effects. In Fares, however, damage was caused by a subsidiary effect of fracking

  •  land grabbing - although not through acquisition, but through destruction - occurred without compensation for the villagers and the denial of any responsibility on part of the company

  • the Egyptian government - under Mubarak, the SCAF, and the Muslim Brotherhood - failed to stand up against the company and protect its citizens

  • environmental concerns not only for the village's proximity to the Nile, but also for the destruction of many mature and rare trees

SHOT DESCRIPTION

00:00 - 00:17
Images of Upper Egypt, Map of Fares

VO: "75 km north of Aswan lies Fares, a village of 30,000 inhabitants, on the west bank of the Nile. Renowned as one of the principle producers of mangoes and dates in Egypt, the majority of Fares' residents are employed in the agricultural sector, making fields and crops the crux of the village's economy."

00:18 - 00:35 Images of the flooded fields, Sheikh Ahmed Abdel Hamid

VO: "However, in January 2013, flooding of groundwater devastated fields and orchards, and destroyed houses and local buildings in the village. The flooding has been attributed to the hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, operations by the company Dana Gas, whose extraction site, is only 10 km north of Fares.

00:36 - 00:47 Animated info-graphic on fracking

VO: "Fracking is a controversial technique used to extract natural gas from shale rock. This is done by creating fissures in the shale with a perforating gun, and then injecting a pressurized mixture of water and chemicals to release the trapped gas and bring it to the surface."

00:48 - 01:19 Interview with the Sheikh Ahmed Abdel Hamid (community leader), images of the fields

"It has started since 2009-- first they found that the soil became wet. Gradually, the water began to come on the surface, higher and higher, until it reached the level of one metre. This water has submerged about 2,000 feddans of land (840 hectares)."

01:20 - 01:26 Images of fields, uprooted palm tree

VO: Although the company is not fracking in Fares directly, the flooding is believed to be a result of Dana Gas's seismic testing using 'shot-holes'.

01:26 - 01:52 Animated info-graphic on seismic testing

VO: "Seismic testing uses 30 foot pipes that are inserted into the ground, and an explosion is detonated. The vibrations from the explosion bounce off the subsurface rock and travel back to the surface, where a grid of geophone sensors pick up the wavelengths, thus determining the expanse of the shale below. Ordinarily in the industry, the pipes are plugged in order to prevent flooding. But, these pipes were left open in the fields-- creating a pathway for flowing groundwater to stream upwards."

01:53 - 02:09 Images of fields, springs

VO: "The flooding reached a climax in January, but damage to the fields remains. Stagnant puddles of water exceeding 3 inches, cover entire fields. Groundwater continues to spring spontaneously, creating essentially a swamp out of homes and a formerly prosperous crop."

02:10 - 02:24 Interview with Mohamed Abdouh (farmer and teacher)

"Approximately about 150 families have to move, because of this problem. A lot of these families can't afford to build new houses."

02:25 - 02:36 Interview with Mohamed Abdouh, images of the local graveyard
"The most bitter thing for the villagers is that the graveyard of the village has completely submerged. "

02:37 - 03:06 Interview with Sheikh Ahmed Abdel Hamid in front of a house destroyed

"Approximately 2,000 feddans were flooded by the groundwater. it is more than 2,000 feddans. In these areas there were trees: palms, lemon, mango, berries and that now there is water (that are now flooded). It has more than a hundreds of thousands of doom, palms, mangoes, lemons, and all citrus and this is all the income for the village. These fields are the only income for the village "

03:07 - 03:20 Images of residents

VO: Residents state that there was virtually no consultation with the village prior to shale extraction. In 2009, they were told there may be gas reserves in their village, but the seismic testing carried out directly on their land, was not explained to them.

03:21 - 03:44

"They just came and drilled. When the farmers asked them they told (them) they were looking for oil. So the farmers were happy. If they found gas or oil on your land, you will have a good compensation. Good money as a compensation."

03:45 - 03:52 Images of a street seller, men sitting on the ground, kid riding a donkey

VO: "The governor of Aswan stated that the company would create 450 jobs for local residents, yet no one has been employed to date."

03:53 - 04:06 Images of children, the local school, man picking up bricks

VO: "Moreover, compensation remains a large concern for the residents' livelihood. Beyond the municipal government offering to help rebuild the hospital and school, very little money has actually met the hands of the land and home owners whose properties were damaged."

04:07 - 04:34 Interview with Mohamed Abdouh

"When the villagers went to make a sit-in in the company-- in the site there- -the responsibles came and told us they have given the clerks in the municipal council a big number-- a lot of money. When we returned to the municipal council, they denied that. So we are... we don't know how. We are now bewildered between them…"

04:35 - 04:49 Images of the cleanup operation site.

VO: "The government began cleanup efforts six months ago by draining the fields with pipes that would empty to a drainage canal and then run back into the Nile. The pipes though, were too small, and so the clean up project had come to a halt. When they will resume is unknown."

04:50 - 04:59 Images of Sheikh Ahmed Abdel Hamid, puddle of stagnant water, the Nile river from Fares' shore.

VO: "Residents still have not heard back from the municipal council abt the water test results, but maintain that the water is harmful, which is also a cause for concern due to its proximity to the Nile."

05:00 - 05:16 Images of Sheikh Ahmed Abdel Hamid, images of resident walking next to trees, man on the train.

VO:
In addition to the ecological concerns, it's significant that Fares' principal fields and orchards were destroyed, including many mature trees that had reached peak production. Thus not only costing the agricultural-centered village lost profits this year, but also for the years to come.

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Bamiyan Buddhas Timelapse Video
Bamyan, Afghanistan
By johnjournalist
30 Apr 2013

A timelapse video of the buddhas of Bamiyan destroyed by the Taliban.

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Transition
Moscow, Russia
By Marina Fonda
03 Apr 2013

Wissam is a Journalism student in Moscow and former Syrian Army officer. After being forbidden by his advisor teacher of writing his final paper on the farce of Russian coverage of the conflicts on Syria, a brainwashing aimed to make Russians stand by Bashar al Assad and the Russian government protecting him, he decides to head back to his homeland to make a film and show Russians what's really going on in his country. The film depicts Wissam's entrance in Syria by a Free Syrian Army controled border, citizens running from snipers and their stations working mode, temporary hospitals, refugees crossing the border with Turkey, destroyed Suni mosques, schools, residential buildings by government army's bombs and contains interviews with refugees (internal and fleeing abroad), injured, FSA soldiers etc.
This is a 15 min, full-HD documentary film.

Transcription:

(VO) My name is Wissam and I'm from Syria, I'm a student of Journalism in my final year ...In Moscow The reason why I came to study in a country that lacks freedom of press is that Russia was the only country to give me a visa after I resigned. Oh, I forgot to tell you... I was an officer in the Syrian army

(VO) After the Syrian dictator Hafez al-Assad's death, his son Bashar inherited the power for that, the Constitution was amended, in the world's fastest assembly. The former Constitution demanded that the minimum age for being president should be 40 years of age. They've changed it for 34, the age of Bashar at the time I realized it was about time to write my resignation letter and leave Syria I didn't see my mom for the last 8 years I was afraid of visiting my family in Syria since an old friend from the army told me I was wanted
by the Syrian intelligence they've received a report from the embassy in Moscow saying I was against the regime I remembered my father at that point When I was a kid, he used to say: “The walls have ears” By that time, I didn't understand He lived 79 years in fear. When I was in the army, he advised me not to speak about the regime in front of other officers I used to find it funny, him worried about me, and then he told me: “These people are criminals, you didn't see what I saw” Once, he told me about an event so that I could understand his uncommon fear of the regime He told me how the army came and took one person from each house during the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha, in 1980, in Aleppo They took around 100 people, among them children and elderly. It was a very difficult moment for my father, when he saw his childhood friends lined against the wall and get executed These crimes were called Al Mashariqa Massacre, named after the neighborhood where it occurred That's how Hafez al-Assad controlled the country for 3 decades, committing the worse massacres of these times The most famous of them was the Hama Massacre In this city, he killed dozens of thousands of civilians through shelling and artillery in 1982

(VO) In March 2011, the revolution began in Syria I realized then that the blood series started again The dictator inherited from his father not only the country, but also his criminality The difference this time was the will of the people, which had already changed with the generations The dictator used all means of intimidation, such as executions, torture and rape to eliminate the peaceful protests He counts on the support of loyal states, such as Iran and Russia, which provide him with weapons and hinder international resolutions against him But with the continuous bloodshed, people decided to take up arms and defend themselves After the liberation of wide areas in Aleppo, I decided to go back there where I grew up and from where I was away for a long time

(VO) This is the border of Bab al Salam, the security entrance which leads to Turkey

Bashar’s hired thugs, the “shabihha”, spent a long time in the region stealing The “Shabihha” used these offices to torment civilians A bunch of impolite people who got from the regime the power of making Syrian people’s lives unbearable

(Wissam says) But, thank God for the Free Syrian Army and free militias, we are free!

(Driver shout) Peace be upon you!

(VO) We entered Aleppo during the night to avoid the air strikes and snipers I was afraid, but my fears spread away when I saw the first FSA control station

(Militia) Peace be upon you! Where are you from?
(Driver) Aleppo (Militia) Where in Aleppo? (Driver) Al Jamiliyeh (Militia) Show me your documents (Driver) Here it is (Militia) Brother, could you show me your document as well? There are people trying to infiltrate during the night
(Driver) Ok, ok Did we arrive in Al Mushat already?
(Militia) It's Al Mushat! (Driver) We didn't realize because it's night We are part of your Tawhid Brigade
(Militia) Welcome! Honestly, it's because the regime infiltrated last week and took two of us
(Driver) Really? (Militia) Yes! Take care in Al Sinaa! The regime's snipers killed already 4 people there!

(VO) So much destruction made impossible for me to recognize the streets where I grew up The smell of blood replaced the fragrance of flowers
The sound of shelling took the place of birds singing The birds, just like the Syrian people, either died or ran away Young people lost their limbs in savage shelling I couldn't see any of this on Russian TV in 2 years of revolution World history doesn't know anyone who have killed its own people and destroyed its own country such as Bashar al Assad This fool overcame the madness of Nero burning Rome, and didn't spare women, children or elderly

(Wissam) This is an innocent 2year old child “Mig” bomber planes killed her parents and she was rescued by a civilian who brought her to a temporary hospital

(Wissam) Cluster bombs are still incubated. There it is. Bombs that didn't explode. It's a danger to every civilian who lives in this building, because inside there are dozens of bombs. It's internationally forbidden to use these bombs in populated areas. But this criminal regime doesn't see the difference between civilians and militaries. It points to residential buildings just to force people to leave Syria

(Wissam) This... We can hear the snipers, who’d target anyone that crosses the parallel street. They are based there, to the left. These are residential areas, which were abandoned because of the air strikes. Assad's snipers are on the top of the buildings. Anything that crosses their field of view will be targeted: children, women, and elderly... Even a dog or a cat!

(Wissam) Now we are in a building in Salah al Deen neighborhood and, because of the snipers, we are going to cross trough these wholes that the FSA opened. The fear of snipers forced these people to flee. Even they left their clothes behind. They left everything in the wardrobe. Here is a sniper shot. Looking down... Two more shots. And one here, through the glass. I can't continue, or a sniper will notice us.
This is a kitchen in a residence. They even targeted a kitchen... There are no terrorists here. It's a peaceful people's home.

(FSA soldier) Can you see him? (Wissam) I see! (FSA soldier) Do you want me to open the curtain a little bit? (Wissam) No, no, I see it! (Wissam) That's a mosque’s minaret in front of this house. There it is one, of them... There are many snipers based there. He shoots! He shoots, targeting civilians...

(FSA soldier) I'm an army deserter (Wissam) Why did you desert? (FSA soldier) Because of the injustice we presented (Wissam) Where did you serve? (FSA soldier) In Qatana's 10th platoon (Wissam) Did they order you to kill peaceful protesters? (FSA soldier) Yes (Wissam) Or isn't it true? (FSA soldier) Of course, and they gave us pills... (Wissam) They medicated you? (FSA soldier) Yes (Wissam) And the protesters? (FSA soldier) They'd put us in front of the protesters and told us to open fire. They didn't have permission to pass by. We wanted to protect the people, but we were only protecting a throne.

(VO) After all this, I arrived to my uncle's home. I wanted to surprise him with my visit. But I was the one surprised. The building was already empty. Aleppo is a historical city that the terror of the regime turned into a ghost city. People abandoned
their neighborhoods, leaving behind piles of pain and destruction that tears won't eliminate from
memory.

(Wissam) Did they shoot you in your leg? (Old man) They shot 4 times (Wissam) 4 times! (Old man) Russian shots AK-47 And what happened to you? (Old man) It’s broke! This bone here was shattered as well. Yes, it’s broke. (Wissam) Was it the Syrian army? (Old man) It was Bashar al-Assad's army! (Wissam) May God heal you! Who destroyed all this?

(Old man) It was his bombers and mortars, which invaded the Martyrs' street. We renamed it... (Wissam) Martyr's street? (Old man) We called it this way... (Wissam) Why Martyr's street? (Old man) Because during peaceful protests the regime opened fire and killed 14 civilians in here. The army sacked us, stole us, emptied our homes.

(Wissam) “Bashar's men passed here”... This school was used as a prison and headquarters. It was terrible for this neighborhood’s people.

(Wissam) “Scud” soviet missiles are sent from the capital, about a Km from Aleppo. Artillery and aviation are the means used to terrify the remaining population and force it to obey

(Boy) He attacked us with missiles, cluster bombs, “Mig” and “Shukhoi” airplanes...

(Woman) We came here because of Bashar. May he go to hell!

(Wissam) Why are you in this mosque? (Kid) Because of the bombings (Wissam) did you flee to the mosque because of the bombings?

(Wissam) What's your name? (Girl) Kifaa (Wissam) What? (Girl) Kifaa (Wissam) How old are you, Kifaa? (Girl) I'm seven years old (Wissam) Why do you live in the mosque? (Girl) They bombed our house

(VO) Terrifying the local population and destroying their homes, forcing people to flea the homeland: this is the regime's policy to try to eliminate the revolution.

(Refugee) The air force is bombing the Northern villages (Wissam) The air force? (Refugee) Yes (Wissam) Might God protect you! Is your family in Turkey?
(Refugee) Yes

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Transition (Part 1 of 2)
Moscow, Russia
By Marina Fonda
03 Apr 2013

PART 2: http://transterramedia.com/media/18536

Wissam is a Journalism student in Moscow and former Syrian Army officer. After being forbidden by his advisor teacher of writing his final paper on the farce of Russian coverage of the conflicts on Syria, a brainwashing aimed to make Russians stand by Bashar al Assad and the Russian government protecting him, he decides to head back to his homeland to make a film and show Russians what's really going on in his country. The film depicts Wissam's entrance in Syria by a Free Syrian Army controled border, citizens running from snipers and their stations working mode, temporary hospitals, refugees crossing the border with Turkey, destroyed Suni mosques, schools, residential buildings by government army's bombs and contains interviews with refugees (internal and fleeing abroad), injured, FSA soldiers etc.
This is a 26 min, full-HD documentary film.

Transcription:

(VO) My name is Wissam and I'm from Syria, I'm a student of Journalism in my final year ...In Moscow The reason why I came to study in a country that lacks freedom of press is that Russia was the only country to give me a visa after I resigned. Oh, I forgot to tell you... I was an officer in the Syrian army

(VO) After the Syrian dictator Hafez al-Assad's death, his son Bashar inherited the power for that, the Constitution was amended, in the world's fastest assembly. The former Constitution demanded that the minimum age for being president should be 40 years of age. They've changed it for 34, the age of Bashar at the time I realized it was about time to write my resignation letter and leave Syria I didn't see my mom for the last 8 years I was afraid of visiting my family in Syria since an old friend from the army told me I was wanted by the Syrian intelligence they've received a report from the embassy in Moscow saying I was against the regime I remembered my father at that point When I was a kid, he used to say: “The walls have ears” By that time, I didn't understand He lived 79 years in fear. When I was in the army, he advised me not to speak about the regime in front of other officers I used to find it funny, him worried about me, and then he told me: “These people are criminals, you didn't see what I saw” Once, he told me about an event so that I could understand his uncommon fear of the regime He told me how the army came and took one person from each house during the Muslim holiday of Eid al-Adha, in 1980, in Aleppo They took around 100 people, among them children and elderly. It was a very difficult moment for my father, when he saw his childhood friends lined against the wall and get executed These crimes were called Al Mashariqa Massacre, named after the neighborhood where it occurred That's how Hafez al-Assad controlled the country for 3 decades, committing the worse massacres of these times The most famous of them was the Hama Massacre In this city, he killed dozens of thousands of civilians through shelling and artillery in 1982

(VO) In March 2011, the revolution began in Syria I realized then that the blood series started again The dictator inherited from his father not only the country, but also his criminality The difference this time was the will of the people, which had already changed with the generations The dictator used all means of intimidation, such as executions, torture and rape to eliminate the peaceful protests He counts on the support of loyal states, such as Iran and Russia, which provide him with weapons and hinder international resolutions against him But with the continuous bloodshed, people decided to take up arms and defend themselves After the liberation of wide areas in Aleppo, I decided to go back there where I grew up and from where I was away for a long time

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Dambe - Promo
Bamako, Mali
By Dearbhla Glynn
03 Apr 2013

This is the musical story of two talented Irish musicians covering thousands of miles
of stunning yet arduous terrain from Bamako in the south to the mysterious ancient
city of Timbuktu, from which point they enter the Sahara. The film captures Mali in
all its magic and beauty, celebrating culture and the power of music. This film is a
musical journey into Mali, West Africa. Renowned Irish musicians Liam O’Maonlaí
(The Hothouse Flowers) and Paddy Keenan (The Bothy Band) travel thousands of kilometers through Mali, to discover why it is known as the heart of Africa.

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Produced
Global
By U.S. Editor
02 Apr 2013

Repository of produced material

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From All Sides: Violence and Policing...
Oakland, CA
By upheavalproductions
01 Apr 2013

A quick sample taken from preliminary interviews providing an overview of the proposed subject matter for a short documentary news piece.

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Syrians Struggle in Jordan
Za'atari Camp and Mafraq, Jordan
By Amy Hybels
25 Mar 2013

During US President Barack Obama's visit to Jordan, King Abdullah II vowed to keep the Kingdom's borders open after announcing that more than 460,000 Syrian refugees have fled to Jordan since the conflict began. The influx is projected to cost the Kingdom $550 million dollars a year, however the number of refugees are expected to double by the end of the year.
Video journalist Amy Hybels traveled to Mafraq and the Za'atari refugee camp to see how the Syrian refugees living both inside and outside of the largest camp are coping.

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Prince Charles Imparts Royal Advice t...
Amman, Jordan
By Amy Hybels
12 Mar 2013

The lack of job opportunities for young people is a serious problem in Jordan where the Labor Ministry reported an unemployment rate of 21.3% among 18-to-30 year olds.
During a recent visit to the Kingdom, Prince Charles took time to attend a business enterprise conference where he imparted some royal advice to young entrepreneurs. Amy Hybels has the story.

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Mook, The Teenage Thai Weightlifter
Bangkok, Thailand
By Biel Calderon
03 Mar 2013

Mook, 17, never imagined she could have a different life, away from ricefields and farming. Having lost her mother at the age of 9, she moved to Surin, one of the poorest provinces in Thailand, to live with her father’s family. She was then obliged to work in the fields, clean the house and look after her younger cousins. At 12, a friend of the family saw her strong body and suggested her to earn her life with weightlifting. She got a scholarship for the National Youth Team in Bangkok and started a new life. Now she gets a small salary and has a safe place to stay while she pursues her studies in high school.

Many children and youth from poor families in Thailand are sent to this kind of programmes to get a chance to study and earn some money. Most of them choose the traditional boxing, Muay Thai, but weightlifting is becoming more popular as some Thai female athletes have recently won some Olympic medals.

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Tens of thousands of children studyin...
Pakistan Administered Kashmir (PAK)
By objectivereporter
03 Mar 2013

Around 2, 800 schools were decimated by an earthquake that hit a large part of northern Pakistan in 2005. The government failed to reconstruct those schools even after 8 years, risking the lives of thousands of children who are forced to take lessons under the open sky in harsh winter and scorching summer. The government claims that it faces a paucity of funds to rebuild decimated schools while on the other hand, critics of government say most funds provided by the international community for rehabilitation have been directed to other projects. Officials say around 200,000 children in areas located above 5000 feet high altitude are compelled to continue study either in wall-less, roofless shelters or worn-out tents. Government claims that 1,100 schools out of total 2, 800 have so far been built while construction work 900 schools has been suspended due to want of funds. The construction work on 700 schools yet to be started. Due to non-availability of funds number of drop out of children have been increased as parents are reluctant to send their children to such schools due to health hazards.
The October 8, 2005 earthquake, which originated in the Himalayan mountains of Pakistan was the worst disaster in the history of the country; it left more than 70,000 dead, injured twice that number, left up to 1 million homeless and 1 million in immediate need of assistance.
The Government of Pakistan estimated that 17,000 children died, 23,000 children suffered disabilities and long-term injuries while more than 39,000 children lost one parent and 1,700 lost both parents. Thousands more were left homeless and vulnerable. Most of children died when they were in schools when earthquake struck the area razing sub-standard constructed schools buildings to ground and burying thousands of children alive

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Underground Car Races in Adana Preview
Adana, Turkey
By Ibrahim Karci
15 Feb 2013

00.01-00.05
Adana! Mostly known as the city of Kebab.

00.07-00.12
People of Adana have reputation of their crazy and chilled lifestyle.

00:12-0018
Spacious areas, good spicey food, cool booze and..

00:18-00-20
..FAST CARS!

00:38 - 00:37
-I can't attend every race because I can't afford it. I can't use LPG during the race and the oil quiet expensive. And each race there is some part broken that has to be fixed or changed. It costs a lot.

01:00-01:25
This is an opening of another new garage where the racers mostly meet to show off.
And since it is in the middle of the city resident of the neighbourhood is not so happy with the situation.

01:29-01:34
-It is vandalism. This is not a race track, this is neighbourhood. It is sunday and peple are resting. They don't have right to disturb people.

01:36-01:37
-Cop is Coming!

01:45-01:58
And soon after officers arrives upon the complaint of the neighbourhood, as always.

01:58-02:01
-Take these cars immediately! -Ok sir!

02:11-02:14
-They said if it occurs again they will punish us so bad.

02:16-02:21
-Should we go to the highway all together or to the hill ? -To the hill. The highway is also problematic now.

02:25-02:35
But nothing seems like to be avoid them from racing or gathering up, Because they always have an alternative secret place to gather up and start racing.

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New Cut Real Democracy
Palestine
By Andy Beale
08 Feb 2013

Real Democracy is a vote donation program, organized by Israeli and Palestinian activists, and enacted through Facebook. The campaign allowed disenfranchised Palestinians to vote in the most recent Israeli Knesset elections through Israeli citizens who donated their ballot. Interviews were conducted with activists on both sides who organized the project, as well as Israeli Citizens, East Jerusalem Residents, and West Bank Residents who had heard about the initiative. The campaign signals the development of a new strategy in anti-occupation organizing in the region.

PTC
During the recent Israeli elections, a group known as Real Democracy used social media to reach across the green line, connecting anti-occupation activists in Palestine with supporters in Israel. Since Palestinians living outside the borders given Israel in 1948 live under Israeli military occupation but are not allowed to vote in Israel, Real Democracy organizers decided to use Facebook to give them a voice in the elections.

Quote: Shimri Zmeret
“So an Israeli goes on the Facebook page and posts a video or statement saying ‘I want to give my vote.' And a Palestinian goes on the same page and says ‘I will use your vote.’”

PTC
From the Arab Spring to Occupy Wall Street, social media has played an increasingly important role in protest movements. Although Real Democracy organizers believe the campaign could have succeeded without Facebook, they say the social-media platform played a critical role in forging connections between activists who otherwise would have been unable to meet each other due to travel restrictions enforced by Israel.

Quote: Ameer Suleibi
“As Palestinians who live in the West Bank, they cannot enter Israeli area, because we don’t have permission, we don’t have declaration. My age is around 23, and I have never visited Jerusalem. So the best way in order to communicate with Israeli people or Arab people who live in Israel: by the Facebook or by Emails or by, ya3ni, by the internet.”

Quote: Shimri
“So, I can connect with a Palestinian through Facebook much more easily than I can go there because I can’t go to Ramallah and a Palestinian from Ramallah can’t come here.”

PTC
Activists argue that because the occupation has such a profound effect on Palestinian lives, they should be given the right to participate in the voting process.

Quote: Mousa
“The Israeli government, they have a plan to build an apartheid wall in our land, and to take much land from our side, and we are not allowed later to work in that land because it will be inside the wall.”

PTC
As the Israeli magazine +972 reported, one out of three people living under Israeli military control, including the residents here in the West Bank and Gaza, are not allowed to vote.

Quote: Haytham Tofukji
“But as I'm saying, here in Jerusalem, we are not allowed. I mean we are not allowed to be part of the elections, the Israeli elections, as we are residents. According to Israeli law, we are residents of Jerusalem.”

Quote: Shimri
“There's two reasons Israelis should give their votes to Palestinians. One is that Israel is undemocratic, and the second is that the UN is undemocratic. In the UN, the Israelis have the kind of ultimate power, if you want, the veto power, on their side but the Palestinians don't even have a vote in the General Assembly.”

PTC
Real Democracy organizers say several thousand people used the program. With a voter turnout of around 3.6 million this election, it's unlikely that this was enough to influence the elections, though activists say changing the outcome was never the point.

Quote: Haytham
“Maybe this project, if it continues—I'm not saying, because it's the first step—if it continues maybe it will reach a level with the goals of the idea.”

Quote: Mousa
“I believe, the small number, they will not do something. But, in fact, you know, we make a noise.”

PTC
Besides voting for a Knesset member, the Facebook page offered Palestinians the option of asking Israelis to boycott the election. Many Palestinian citizens of Israel who have voting rights boycott Israeli elections on principle.

Quote: Haytham
“For us as Palestinians, we don't consider the State of Israel. We consider Israel as occupation. So here is the point where you boycott them.”

Quote: Lamia Qaddoumi
“Like, any government to come after Benjamin Netanyahu, would be as racist and as dangerous as—as bad as the one before. So why care?”

PTC
Despite the ongoing occupation, many Israelis reject the idea that Palestinians living outside the green line should be allowed to participate in Israel's election process.

Quote: Eitan Bendor
“Because right now, they are the enemy. I mean, it's a big problem. Until you can get to a settlement that both sides can live up to it, then nothing can work. I mean, why should I give if you don't do anything in return?”

Quote: Mani Ben Yisrael
“Why should they donate their votes for Arabs? They don't need a state! You know, they are not a nation, whatever. They should go to Jordan, wherever they came from.”

PTC
Despite some negative feedback, members of Real Democracy say the response they received was overwhelmingly positive. They plan to continue using Facebook to build connections between activists and pursue a democratic solution to the region's problems.

Quote: Mousa
“My message now is to international governments, and that is the most important. My message to them is to make real action for our situation here, and to stop supporting Israeli occupation here.”

Final PTC: Wrap-Up

0:00 – 0:09 – establishing
0:10 – 0:32 – PTC B-Roll Facebook group for donating votes
0:33 – 0:45 – Interview with Co-founder of Real Democracy, Mousa Abu Marya
0:46 – 1:07 - Interview with Co-founder of Real Democracy, Shimri Zameret with B-Roll
1:08 – 1:27 – B-Roll, PTC, Narration
1:28 – 1:50 – Interview West Bank Resident, Ameer Suleibi with B-Roll
1:51 – 2:00 – Sound bite from Co-founder of Real Democracy, Shimri Zameret with B-Roll
2:01 – 2:10 – PTC
2:11 – 2:25 - Interview with Co-founder of Real Democracy, Mousa Abu Marya with B-Roll
2:26 – 2:37 – PTC with B-Roll
2:38 – 2:49 – Interview with Student, Haytham Tofukji, Al Quds University, resident of Jerusalem but not permitted to vote.
2:50 – 3:05 - Interview with Co-founder of Real Democracy, Shimri Zameret with B-Roll
3:06 – 3:19 – PTC with B-Roll
3:20 – 3:30 - Interview with Student, Haytham Tofukji, Al Quds University
3:31 – 3:37 - Interview with Co-founder of Real Democracy, Mousa Abu Marya with B-Roll
3:38 – 3:50 – PTC
3:51 – 3:58 - Interview with Student, Haytham Tofukji, Al Quds University with B-Roll
3:59 – 4:10 – Interview with Student, Lamia Qaddoumi, Al Quds University boycotting election with B-Roll
4:11 – 4:20 – PTC
4:21 – 4:35 – Israeli Citizen, Eitan Bendor, against Palestinians voting
4:36 – 4:47 - Israeli Citizen, Mani Ben Yisrael, against Palestinians voting with B-Roll
4:48 – 5:00 – PTC
5:01 – 5:18 - Interview with Co-founder of Real Democracy, Shimri Zameret with B-Roll
5:19 – 5:34 - Interview with Co-founder of Real Democracy, Mousa Abu Marya with B-Roll
5:35 – 5:40 - PTC

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Slum Echoes - Street Angels Foundatio...
Kampala, Uganda
By William Ranieri
01 Feb 2013

Documentary: Slum Echoes -- Street Angels Foundation Uganda
Kisenyi is the oldest slum/ghetto in Kampala. The Mask and the Teacher will guide you through an incredible journey along this multi-ethnic reality. We meet the Karamojong women, listen to real story of the kids of the slum and dance to unique music. Witness the incredible reality in the heart of Kampala.
This video was realized
with no funding
as a tribute
for all Kids in Slums
around the world.

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ILLUSTRATING OPERATION STREAMLINE - E...
Tuscon, Arizona
By Editor's Picks
20 Jan 2013

Operation Streamline is the U.S. Federal court system response to mass increases in immigration enforcement. Everyday in border cities like Tucson, Arizona, hundreds of migrants apprehended throughout the U.S. are sentenced en masse with scant legal procedures. Criticized as unconstitutional, Streamline sends people to jail or deportation daily.

Off-limits to cameras, journalists ST McNeil and Josh Morgan brought graphic artist Lawrence Gipe to the courtroom to witness and record the "assembly-line." His sketches are the first images ever detailing an opaque border enforcement system.

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New York's Poorest Ignored by Politic...
Bronx, New York, US
By mcseaniew
11 Jan 2013

The community of Highbridge in the South Bronx has never been an affluent part of the United States, much of which was created in the 1940's to accommodate a huge incline in immigration to the city. Today it is home to over 35,000 people, the majority of whom are first- or second-generation immigrants from Dominica, Puerto Rico or Africa. The buildings that were created to house thousands who couldn't afford townhouses and brownstones, are now crumbling. Crime and drug abuse are sky-high. Income disparity in the US is at an all-time high. New York City is home to the most millionaires in the country. But it's also facing a food crisis. Nowhere is this starker than the South Bronx, America's poorest district, where over a quarter of a million people live below the poverty line. No wonder more folks than ever are relying on the Highbridge Community Church food pantry, run by local nonprofit the Muslim Women's Institute for Research and Development (MWIRD). But the pantry faces a closure that would plunge over 2,500 locals into an even-deeper plight.

Welfare is dwindling, and those who need it most find the labyrinthine processes almost impossible to navigate. Many don't speak English as their first language, making the system impenetrable. People who lost their jobs in the recession are struggling to make ends meet. Organisations like the Muslim Women's Institute are many folks' first - and last - resort if they want to eat well. But with the economy the way it is private funds are slipping away, and the pantry the MWI provides could go out of business at any moment. America's philosophies have always made it difficult to allot public funds to society's poorest. But now they face a crisis like never before.

Ibrahim Ramey is a long-time human rights advocate. A Washington DC resident, he has been involved in educating Muslims and Americans about political action in countries as far-flung as Tanzania and Afghanistan. Ibrahim is on the board of the Muslim Women's Institute, the Temple of Understanding (which aims to promote religious coexistence) and the Climate Crisis Coalition. He is also vice president of the Steering Committees of the Religious NGO Community at the UN. Ibrahim is increasingly worried about the lack of political dialogue concerning New York's poor, and the plight of those maligned by the current economic meltdown.

The extreme poor's lifelines are being pulled from them, creating a forgotten underclass no-one is addressing. This 4-6min video reveals the vital role the pantry plays in its neighbourhood, the Bronxites who are being marginalized and the stoic folks who run the pantry, despite the specter of closure remaining ever-present.

Additional footage:

  • Interview with local mother. Discusses how the local govt does nothing, but that the way the pantry is run (because they have no cash) makes her feel as if she is begging.

  • Interview with an older lady about the state of New York City now, compared to decades gone. She complains that 'we don't help others' in this country, mentioning how people have struggled through times like this for years.

  • Interview with a Spanish-speaking middle-aged man, about New York and how difficult it is for people to navigate welfare.

  • Much additional b-roll and OTF footage of the pantry, people cooking fresh food and queuing to get supplies.

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Stateless Part 2
Kampala, Geneva, London, Chicago
By DocuProf
03 Jan 2013

Since the 1994 Genocide, Rwandan refugees from that conflict- and from subsequent events- have created a population of over 150,000 (some say 250,00) living around the world.
In June of 2013, most of these refugees will lose their refugee status and be forced back to Rwanda by the UNHCR (United Nations High Commission for Refugees) and host countries.
The refugees fear repatriation to a country they see as oppressive, dictatorial and discriminatory.

This film explores why it is NOT a proper time to invoke this return by the UN and host countries.

It has interviews with major figures in refugee studies, Paul Rusesabagina (The REAL "Hotel Rwanda" person), Theogene Rudesingwa (former Ambassador to the US from Rwanda) who has been exiled as well as UN officials, Human Rights activists and refugees themselves.
Much of the film was actually shot by the refugees.
46 min long for a broadcast hour

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Stateless Part 1
Kampala, Chicago, London, Geneva
By DocuProf
01 Jan 2013

Part 2 http://transterramedia.com/media/16897

PART 1
Since the 1994 Genocide, Rwandan refugees from that conflict- and from subsequent events- have created a population of over 150,000 (some say 250,00) living around the world.
In June of 2013, most of these refugees will lose their refugee status and be forced back to Rwanda by the UNHCR (United Nations High Commission for Refugees) and host countries.
The refugees fear repatriation to a country they see as oppressive, dictatorial and discriminatory.

This film explores why it is NOT a proper time to invoke this return by the UN and host countries.

It has interviews with major figures in refugee studies, Paul Rusesabagina (The REAL "Hotel Rwanda" person), Theogene Rudesingwa (former Ambassador to the US from Rwanda) who has been exiled as well as UN officials, Human Rights activists and refugees themselves.
Much of the film was actually shot by the refugees.
46 min long for a broadcast hour

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Laolu Sebanjo Afromysterics Art
Abuja, Nigeria
By Taiwo Adeleke
01 Dec 2012

Name: Afromystrerics Art.

Journalist: Taiwo Adeleke

CUE:
A Nigerian born Artist and musician use his works of art to interpret the mystery of the African thought pattern and the weak economics situation in Nigeria from the fuel scarcity, crisis and killings , political power tussle and the challenges of Africa Artist at large. Images and soundbite of people at the art exhibition.

Headline:
Artist use his work of art to interpret the Economic situation in Nigeria and Africa at Large.

SLUG:
RAW-NIGERIA-ART

SYNTHE:
Timi Inekoba (Woman) Participant at the Exhibition
Stanley Ibansu (man) Business man Participant at the Art Exhibition
Laolu Senbanjo (man) Artist / Musician

SHOTLIST:

ABUJA, NIGERIA, NOVEMBER 30, 2012, AT THE ART EXHIBITION
ABUJA NIGERIA, DECEMBER 02, 2012 AT THE MUSIC CONCERT

VAR of a Artist drawing
VAR of Artist art exhibition in Abuja
VAR of people registering at the Art exhibition
VAR of Artist show casing his Art work to Audience
VAR of Artist playing is Guitar and singing to the audience
VAR of Artist Playing his music alone in the garden.
VAR of Artist at his music Concert in Abuja at the city park Abuja Nigeria

SOUNBITE:1 Timi Inekoba (Woman). Participant at the Art Exhibition ( English, 00:00:07:24 ). "My second favorite pieces is about the visual cycle, all the random things that as been going on in Nigeria, the subsidy things, the oil thing, the corruption thing is like he just recycle everything. Am pretty sure you know its art and music it comes together, so he translate everything from art to music , music to art. I think this will stand any were and its good. i like his art because its abstract, its beautiful, its something else,but i think it we go very far".

SOUNDBITE 2 : Stanley Ibansu (man) Business man Participant at the Art Exhibition. (00:00:51:17) "A picture speaks volume. i mean in thousand words , now pictures is in millions of words his art speaks millions of words , its mind blowing , i love what he does, most of what he as done envoy round the women fold , and all this while, why the event was going on i was thinking about why the women but you know discover that its actually the women its a woman world,everything involve around the woman , he has been able to, i had something very peculiar today somebody said that if you are able to change the woman, 80% of the challenges we have in the society is handle and that is the truth. What he is doing is affecting the women fold and i must tell you this is cutting across the change we expect and to tell you the truth he is making the impact that is needed with that ".

SOUNDBITE 3: Laolu Senbanjo (man) Artist / Musician. ( 00:00:47:08)
"My name is Laolu Senbanjo and am an artist and also a musician, my style of art is called Afromysterics art which simply means the mystery of Africa thought pattern, and what i do is hat i like to use my art to interpret different scenario and situations. I draw inspiration from methodology, symbols, Africa life, the Africa third pattern, everyday life and you know what we do is a narrative of a busy mind. An African mind is very busy is thinking of many things at the same time, so with this i try to tell you a lot of stories with just one picture, i take you through a story in a particular painting.

After having exhibitions outside the shore of Nigeria, i have been to few exhibitions am in a position to compare and contrast what the acceptance is like, you know you cant compare the monetary value in terms of appreciation in terms of the value of the artist itself. We in Africa, we need to do more , we need to value our artist and treat therm better because its sad to know that a lot of artist don't even have art galleries.

the major challenges is that of perceptive and understanding of what art is and a lot of people, like i tell people you don't pay an artist for his labour, he is not a laborer, you pay an artist for his site and ability to see what you cant see and put it in imagination on canvas ability to connect what is in your mind to your art. That is what people should value and that is priceless in the sense that when you see a work of art you see people price it like its a commodity like tomatoes and its very heart breaking sometimes the way we treat our own artist and this is something that is absence somewhere like i had exhibition in Germany , the artist are treated with respect and dignity and you know what ever costs a work is the value behind the work , basically you cant price art.

Afromysterics is going on loud , we are launching out and what we want is to take the message of our people , we want to take it to the world in charcoal something that the world have not seen, we want to take it out in a very unique manner, there is notting fetish or demonic about africa art, we should stop demonizing our history , our root because that is what saddens me the most , because most people see carving, mask , they start saying its as this and that , many people have been brain watched, and its painful , very very painful, i menthes are beautiful things that is been appreciated globally , this is what makes us unique, i mean while should be more European than an European, i mean he doesn't want to see the like of Michelangelo , Da vinci, of this world, i mean while not do what is natural to you , we have our styles of art , we have what cones to us naturally and the reasons while am doing this is that , this is what comes to me , this is what i feel, this is what i imagine and this is what am dreaming , i mean my art , i that is what am actually doing here i just sit down and let it flow that as been my life i let it flow."

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African Wood Company Seeks to Refores...
Yatta, Kitui - Kenya
By Ruud Elmendorp
14 Nov 2012

The Africa Wood Grow company is trying a new angle on replanting, and combatting deforestation. They hope to make their endeavor lucrative, and attractive to business owners who need lumber, and other wood products.

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WAITING OUT THE AIRSTRIKES - Editor's...
Maarat al Numan, Syria
By Editor's Picks
12 Nov 2012

The people of Maarat al Numan comprise a city of 150,000 located strategically on Syria's main highway. Each dawn they leave the city to avoid airstrikes. Some do not escape the danger in time and hardworking neighbors try fervently to dig their bodies out of the rubble during the nighttime when the airstrikes pause.