DIRECTORS’ NOTES

The outbreak of the so-called “refugee crisis” took place during our journalism senior year at the Autonomous University of Barcelona (UAB). Throughout our whole academic path, we both have been involved in the pursuit of alternative media sources in collaboration with other film and journalism students from universities in Barcelona and the rest of Spain. In this spirit, we created laColumna.cat, an independent online media outlet. Currently, and in order to conclude this project, we are conducting an investigation about the refugee and humanitarian crisis taking place in Europe, and the consequent influence of the defense industry lobby on migration policy.

Since we began acquiring notions of international relations, we both have shared a fascination to understand why certain ideas or interest often pass over civilian lives and their human rights. This innate curiosity has prompted us to ask ourselves what lies behind the massive exodus currently taking place in the Mediterranean. Why those who fleeing wars have to risk their lives in order to reach Europe instead of travel with airline tickets and a stamp on their passports? On the other hand, we also wonder how unfair is the European Union in terms of violating its own human right legislative principles? During our investigation, we realized that Europe is trying to legitimize the strengthening process of its borders using the power of “security rhetoric”. Among the public opinion, the message is that “amidst refugees there are potential terrorists, that is the reason why Europe must protect its borders.” The excuse to create this message is easily detectable, since the international terrorism stage is dominated by those who claim acting on the name of Islam; the same religion of asylum seekers arriving to Europe.

With Colis Suspect, we wanted to find answers related to the so-called “refugee crisis”. What is Europe’s strength? What are the interests related to the closure of borders? How to apply current security management policies? Who do they affect most? How does combating the fight against terrorism intermixes with the fight against irregular immigration? Why are people fleeing wars being treated as a potential threat?

In order to respond these and other questions, we have followed the story of Mohammed, a Sudanese poet, exiled in Paris, who directly suffers the effects of the European Union migration policy. In addition, we have discussed with experts in law, asylum, economy, migrations, security and international relations.