In a Turkish refugee camp, tent A157 is pitched. This is where Hailin, Roken and Soolaf, three teenage girls, tell their shocking stories about how they became victims of atrocities committed by IS soldiers.
At the border between Turkey and Syria, sisters Hailin and Roken and their friend Soolaf live in a refugee camp. They face the hardship of rain and cold under primitive living conditions, but that is the least of their problems. The region where they grew up, west of Mosul, is where IS soldiers committed the worst crimes against Kurdish Yazidis. Men were slaughtered, women and children kidnapped, enslaved, forced into marriage or raped.
Hailin, Roken and Soolaf have also been victims of these crimes. In the best-case scenario, they have lost track of their families, but most of their loved ones have been brutally murdered. In their temporary lodgings, tent number A157, they tell their gruesome tale to filmmaker Behrouz Nouranipour. We see images from the camp, near the water pump and the improvised playground, but the focus is on the interior of tent A157 and the girls’ stories. They tell about their lives before the war, about the dreams they still want to pursue, about the family members they lost and the crimes committed against them. Without a doubt, A157 is the most confrontational film at the Movies that Matter Festival 2017, but looking away is absolutely not an option.
Text: Dirk van der Straaten