At Cannes, Syrian docu filmmaker highlights Assad regime’s continuing attacks on hospitals 

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Waad Al-Kateab and her colleagues stage a poster protest against the Syrian regime's excesses on the sidelines of the Cannes Film Festival in Cannes, France, on Wednesday. (Ammar Abd Rabboo/Arab News)
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Waad Al-Kateab and her colleagues stage a poster protest against the Syrian regime's excesses on the sidelines of the Cannes Film Festival in Cannes, France, on Wednesday. (Ammar Abd Rabboo/Arab News)
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Waad Al-Kateab and her colleagues stage a poster protest against the Syrian regime's excesses on the sidelines of the Cannes Film Festival in Cannes, France, on Wednesday. (Ammar Abd Rabboo/Arab News)
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Waad Al-Kateab and her colleagues stage a poster protest against the Syrian regime's excesses on the sidelines of the Cannes Film Festival in Cannes, France, on Wednesday. (Ammar Abd Rabboo/Arab News)
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Waad Al-Kateab and her colleagues stage a poster protest against the Syrian regime's excesses on the sidelines of the Cannes Film Festival in Cannes, France, on Wednesday. (Ammar Abd Rabboo/Arab News)
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Waad Al-Kateab and her colleagues stage a poster protest against the Syrian regime's excesses on the sidelines of the Cannes Film Festival in Cannes, France, on Wednesday. (Ammar Abd Rabboo/Arab News)
Updated 16 May 2019
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At Cannes, Syrian docu filmmaker highlights Assad regime’s continuing attacks on hospitals 

  • Syrian docu film maker highlights systematic destruction of hospitals by Assad regime at Cannes
  • Waad Al-Kateab documentary film "For Sama" is considered among the "rising stars" to watch for at the annual film festival

JEDDAH: Arab documentary maker Waad Al-Kateab led a protest on the sidelines of the Cannes Film Festival Wednesday to highlight the Assad regime's continuing attacks on hospitals in Syria.
The film director and her colleagues posed with protest posters on the red carpet calling on the Syrian regime to stop its systematic destruction of medical facilities in opposition-held areas.
"Stop bombing hospitals," the posters screamed.
Al-Kateab is in Cannes where her documentary film "For Sama" is considered among the "rising stars" to watch for at the annual film festival.
“For Sama” records five years of Al-Kateab’s own life as an aspiring journalist in her besieged hometown of Aleppo, marrying one of the last doctors in the city and giving birth to her daughter, to whom the film is dedicated.
The documentary is a kind of letter to the little girl, explaining how she was born into the conflict and what happened to her home.
Al-Kateab, who now lives in London, won an Emmy award in 2017 for her films from inside Aleppo for Britain’s Channel 4 News, which are believed to be the most watched of any reports from the war.
Her shocking footage of the struggle to save babies and children in the city’s final hospital — in which she ended up living — brought home the horror inflicted on civilians.
The Syrian government had been accused of attacking hospitals starting in 2012 as the "Arab Spring" style peaceful protests, which began in 2011, degenerated into a civil war after dictator Bashir Al-Assad opted to fight it to cling to power.
Amnesty International documented "more than 300 attacks on medical facilities by Syrian and Russian forces" in 2015 alone.
In 2016, the Syrian American Medical Society recorded 252 attacks on Syrian health care centers, among them a facility run by the Medicins Sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders), which was hit in an airstrike in the morning of February 15, leaving 25 people dead, including nine health care workers and five children.
An article on Wikipedia compiled numerous incidents of attacks on Syrian hospitals, citing various news reports, and put the blame of Syrian and Russian forces. Moscow and Damascus officials have repeatedly denied deliberately targeting medical facilities.

The war in Syria has killed more than 370,000 people and displaced millions since it started with the brutal repression of anti-government protests in 2011.
 

(With AFP)

 


What We Are Reading Today: Democratic Equality by James Lindley Wilson

Updated 17 August 2019
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What We Are Reading Today: Democratic Equality by James Lindley Wilson

  • It mounts a bold and persuasive defense of democracy as a way of making collective decisions

Democracy establishes relationships of political equality, ones in which citizens equally share authority over what they do together and respect one another as equals. 

But in today’s divided public square, democracy is challenged by political thinkers who disagree about how democratic institutions should be organized, and by antidemocratic politicians who exploit uncertainties about what democracy requires and why it matters. 

Democratic Equality mounts a bold and persuasive defense of democracy as a way of making collective decisions, showing how equality of authority is essential to relating equally as citizens, says a review on the Princeton University Press website.

James Lindley Wilson explains why the US Senate and Electoral College are urgently in need of reform, why proportional representation is not a universal requirement of democracy, how to identify racial vote dilution and gerrymandering in electoral districting, how to respond to threats to democracy posed by wealth inequality, and how judicial review could be more compatible with the democratic ideal.