No Fire Zone – The Killing Fields of Sri Lanka
maandag 25 maart 2013 - 19:30
Discussion with director Callum Macrae and MCM Iqbal from Sri Lanka on the real story about the end of the civil war in Sri Lanka in 2009. Moderator researcher Bart Klem.
It is one of the most brutal military operations of the new millennium. While the world looked away in the first few months of 2009, 40,000 to 70,000 civilians were massacred - mostly as a result of shelling by the Sri Lankan government, determined to end its 26-year old war with Tamil nationalists.
Callum Macrae is an award-winning film maker, writer and journalist currently with Outsider Television, which he had co-founded with Alex Sutherland in 1993. He lives in England. Callum Macrae grew up in Nigeria and Scotland. He studied painting at Edinburgh College of Art for five years, was a dustman for two years, ran a pirate radio station for six months and was a teacher for seven years. He was a member of the Official Edinburgh Festival’s governing Council and President of Edinburgh and District Trades Council. For two years he produced a weekly satirical cartoon strip for the Times Educational Supplement. He then became a full-time writer working initially for a variety of newspapers and magazines including The Scotsman, The Herald and The Guardian. He joined The Observer as Scottish correspondent, where he stayed for three years winning the Campaigning Journalist of the Year award in 1992.
In 1992, he moved into television, presenting and reporting on Channel 4's weekly magazine programs Hard News, and investigative legal series The Brief. With Alex Sutherland, he co-founded Outsider Television in 1993. Outsider Television went on to produce several documentaries for various television channels, including Dispatches, Enemies Within and Sri Lanka's Killing Fields for Channel 4, Witness and People in Power for Al Jazeera and Panorama for the BBC. Sri Lanka's Killing Fields won the Current Affairs - International category of the Royal Television Society's Television Journalism Awards 2010/2011, won two One World Media Awards and earned a BAFTA TV Award nomination.
M.C.M. Iqbal was adviser of the International Independent Group of Eminent Persons invited by the Government of Sri Lanka to monitor the work of the Commission of Inquiry into Serious Human Rights Violations in 2007. Before that, he was secretary to two of Sri Lanka's "truth commissions", presidential inquiry panels into the 30,000 or more forced disappearances that took place in the late 1980s and early '90s in the south and he workes as a consultant to the National Human Rights Commission. In 2007, he was forced to flee the country. He is involved in the production of a documentary “Facing Life after the War” dealing with the humanitarian issues of Sri Lankan women affected by the war. He is currently based in The Netherlands.
Dr. Bart Klem works as a lecturer in political geography at the University of Zurich, Switzerland. He has over ten years of experience doing research in and on the northeast of Sri Lanka and other war-torn areas. He co-authored the evaluation of Norway’s unsuccessful peace efforts in Sri Lanka (titled “Pawns of Peace”) and was involved in several other policy assignments for international agencies and bilateral donors working in Sri Lanka. His PhD comprised a detailed study of post-war transition in eastern Sri Lanka.