Impressive documentary about Italy’s maritime interception operations aimed at immediately returning migrants from Libya who want to reach the European shore. Some refugees apply to the European Court of Human Rights.
In 2009, Silvio Berlusconi and Muammar Gadaffi signed a treaty to limit the flow of migrants from Libya to the Mediterranean coast. Ever since, all migrants who cross are intercepted at sea by the Italian marine and returned to Libya, using force if necessary. Nearly all of them are refugees from other African countries, mostly from war-ridden regions. In Libya, they are discriminated and arrested. Many of them are looking for protection and a better life in Europe, but the Italian marine mercilessly expels them to Libya, where they often end up in detention camps. There, they are physically abused by the local police. It is heartrending to see how their initial joy at seeing an Italian marine vessel turns to disappointment and fear when it becomes clear that they will not be allowed access to the country, and are even handed over to the Libyan authorities.
The 2014 Movies that Matter Festival will also be screening First Snowfall by director Andrea Segre.