72 minutes, 2017
Director: Manon LOIZEAU (France) – co-written by Annick COJEAN
Production: Magnéto Presse, with the support of France Télévisions (France)
It’s a lamentation. A howl, stifled yet deafening. A silent cry whose spasms tear through prison walls, basements, the antechambers of death. It’s the cry of Syrian women who, for the past six years, have been routinely raped in Bashar al-Assad’s jails. An organized, pre-meditated crime, based on a key taboo in traditional Syrian society, which makes it impossible for the victims to ever speak about it, knowing they risk rejection – even being stoned to death – by their own family. Rape – in Syria a weapon of war, but never discussed. A way of not only destroying the woman and her identity, but also breaking her family, her clan, and any form of resistance.
How did a woman’s body become part of Syria’s war? The question raised in this film letting women, previously walled-up in shame and silence, speak.
From 1994 to 2002 Manon LOIZEAU worked as a journalist in Russia, for the BBC, Le Monde and for Capa. In 1997 she began to make documentaries in Moscow for France 2, Arte, Canal Plus, mainly about Human Rights, forbidden places, and forbidden countries such as Chechnya where she worked for more than ten years. After Russia she made several films in Afghanistan, India and Pakistan.
Recently she has made films trying to show the hope and despair in Iran. Since the beginning she has been motivated by a desire to tell unknown stories, to give an outlet to forbidden voices – in Syria, the Yemen and again in the Chechen Republic.