Salwa – lost for words

In Libya on July 15, 2014 at 23:45


Salwa Bugaighis was a human rights lawyer and founding February 17 Revolutionary who was one of the first activists to protest on February 15th in front of the Courthouse in Benghazi, Libya.  She was a member of the National Transitional Council and fought courageously for human rights & dignity and especially for women’s rights in Libya.  On the night of June 25 2014, Salwa was mercilessly gunned down in her own home by suspected Islamist  militants who fear freedom, dignity, democracy and the rule of law.  I filmed this interview with Salwa in Tripoli soon after the overthrow of Gaddafi and she talked about her hopes for the future and some of her fears – all somewhat prophetic now.  Another tragic loss that has become the blood bath of post-conflict Libya.  Too many sacrifices.  May she rest in peace.



Please sign the petition – Justice for Salwa here: https://secure.avaaz.org/en/petition/National_parliaments_the_EU_and_the_UN_Independent_investigation_into_the_murder_of_Salwa_Bugaighis/?dUICsbb&pv=9

It’s Fiji Time!

In Fiji on January 25, 2013 at 22:25

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Recently I saw a random photo about Beachcomber Resort – an idyllic choral atoll deep in the South Pacific just off the coast of Fiji.  As it happens, in 1995 I visited this island.  It was the idyllic picture-postcard-perfect paradise you imagine the South Pacific to be.  But I had just come to Beachcomber from Nadi, Fiji where I saw the real side of Fiji.  Most tourists only go to the resorts in the islands, rarely going into the main islands of Fiji – Viti Levu and Vanua Levu, asides from perhaps visiting the capital Suva.  It was here that you get to see the real Fiji and the warmth and friendliness of its people.   Coming from New Zealand, it was my first time seeing a “developing” nation up front.  The disparity between the luxury tourist resorts, and the poverty of the average Fijian was stark.  

Addicted in Afghanistan: Beautiful and bleak

In Afghanistan on September 19, 2012 at 23:34

Here is a Blog of the film which was recently screened at the Frontline Club – and printed on the Frontline Club Website, reproduced from here.

on September 14, 2012 12:04 PM

By Merryn Johnson

Jawed Taiman’s award winning film, Addicted in Afghanistan, which screened at Frontline on 13 September, is beautiful and utterly bleak. The documentary follows the lives of two young boys, best friends Zahir and Jabar, through the streets of Kabul. The film moves between their sober, childish hilarity and the painful grips of their heroin addiction, which they repeatedly try to beat in a city devastated by war and poverty.

The film’s mood is one of hopelessness. The boys, who guess their age to be between 16 and 17 at the beginning of the film, have been using since they were as young as eight-years-old. And despite their families’ encouragement to get treatment, they are surrounded by addicts: mother, father, uncle, younger sister. Such addiction has become endemic in Kabul and wider Afghanistan where over one million Afghans are estimated to be addicted to drugs, especially heroin. And up to 40% of these addicts are women and children.

After the screening, producer Sharron Ward, was at the Frontline Club to answer question as was Taiman via Skype from Kabul.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

%d bloggers like this: