Focus on Israel and Palestine
Since the “Oslo Accords” in the early 1990s and the hopes for peace it raised at the time among both Israelis and Palestinians, the political situation in the two territories has again worsened. Constructions for the Israeli “Security Fence” on the West Bank started in 2002, beginning to leave a scar on the landscape. The lives of the inhabitants is harder than it’s ever been since 1948 and the U.N. Committee has concluded that Israel is engaging in apartheid practises, in colonisation and the violation of countless international laws. In Israel and Palestine, violence is on the rise and a solution for peace seems further than ever before.
As is the case with the work of the two filmmakers - Palestinian Michel Khleifi and Israeli Avi Mograbi - who will be showing a selection of their films, this political context lies at the centre of many other filmmakers’ creations, both Israeli and Palestinian, all wishing for a peaceful resolution to the conflict. We have decided to screen their films as part of one single focus programme, as an indication that within the realm of cinema it may be possible to stop the war for a while and to reflect, together, on this shared reality that impacts on all of them and has consequences on their personal lives no matter which of the two countries they are from.
Through their films, we understand how each of them, at their own level, are trying to deal with this impossible situation, to find a way to live inside it and to create a space in which to think freely, in which to imagine something other than the national narratives.
Their quest is our quest too, as their situation is at the same time very unique and very universal. They talk about Israel and Palestine, but it also says something about us, about what we witness all over the world: the rise of populism, the rise of nationalism, the surge of fear, the building of walls.