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SABAYA

Hogir Hirori / Sweden / 2021 / 91 min / European Premiere
On the front during a highly intense rescue operation to liberate Yazidi girls held as sex slaves by IS. But what life is awaiting them on the other side?

When Islamic State attacked the Iraqi city of Sinjar in 2014, thousands of Yazidi girls and women were captured and forced to become sex slaves (also known as ‘sabaya’). Today, many of them are in the Syrian refugee camp Al-Hol, among IS members who continue to exploit them. With their lives at stake, the courageous members of the local NGO Yazidi Home Center infiltrate the camp’s endless rows of tents to free the women and help them return to life and their families. The Kurdish-Swedish filmmaker Hogir Hirori joins them during the often adrenaline-pumping rescue operations, complete with shootings and car chases through the desert in the middle of the night. But it is the women who have survived the incomprehensible horrors and are now facing an uncertain future that make ‘Sabaya’ a heartbreaking, unforgettable experience.