'My Daughter the Terrorist' producer receives death threat - Norwegian paper

[TamilNet, Friday, 11 April 2008, 10:57 GMT]
Morten Dae, the producer of the award winning Norwegian documentary film, "My Daughter the Terrorist," on two Tamil Black Tiger female cadres in Vanni, has received death threats after the Government of Sri Lanka (GoSL) failed in blocking the organisers from screening the film at the Full Frame Documentary Festival, in Durham in the United States, reported Dagsavisen, a Norwegian daily, on Thursday.

Mr. Dae has received electronic threats warning him to "take care of himself and his family," wishing him "good luck in heaven," and accusing that the producer had "blood in his hands," the paper reported.

The documentary, which won the award for best full length documentary film at the Message to Man International Film Festival in St Petersburg, in June 2007, was screened in the United States despite a protest orchestrated by the Sri Lankan mission through the Sinhalese expatriates.

Recognizing that many of those who protest have not seen the documentary film, the producer says that "the film stands for itself."

"We clearly display the result of the LTTE attacks and also focus on the ethical issues connected to it," he says. "We also look at the reasons behind these extreme actions by the guerrillas."

Morten Dae
Morten Dae [Photo courtesy: Dagsavisen]
The producers of the documentary say they had let the subjects in the documentary to speak for themselves and not taken a side. It is absurd to argue that the producers support terrorism by letting the subjects speak for themselves, the producer says. "What matters here is that we are enabling viewers to know the way of thinking of the females in the documentary."

He also observes that the balance of the coverage on Sri Lankan conflict, from the very begninning, has been grotesquely tilted. The paper added that Sri Lanka is a country with a worst record in attacking journalists.

Sri Lanka's Information Department, in a recent news report, cited Sri Lankan Foreign Ministry as saying that the producer of the documentary, Beate Arnestad, had arrived in Sri Lanka during the Cease Fire Agreement period and entered Vanni without the permission of the Foreign Ministry or any responsible "state body" for the filming of the movie.

The producers of the film admit that they didn't seek specific permission to do the documentary as it was obvious that the GoSL would not be providing clearance to do a documentary film in LTTE controlled area. However, they got clearance from the Norwegian Embassy in Oslo to make a documentary on the Tsunami catastrophy in Sri Lanka, which they also did, according to Morten Dae.


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Dagsavisen: Produsent truet på livet


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