Beyond Borders [The Documentary]

Episodes

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01Seeking Safety2019051920190522 (WS)

The Syrian war has created one of the largest human displacements in history – with millions of people on the move seeking safety. For over five years, British-Lebanese journalist Zahra Mackaoui has been following the stories of a group of Syrians, who have scattered across the world in search of safety. She originally met and interviewed them in the early years of the long-running civil war.

Zahra starts with Hani, a young man who has become a national figure in his new homeland of Canada, where he sat on the National Youth Council. From there the story passes to Hani’s cousin Ayesha, who is in Lebanon, where life is often difficult. Also in Lebanon, she catches up with a young girl called Shahad. Her family home was destroyed by a missile and they are now living in abject poverty in a half-built university south of Beirut. She hears how they have coped – or otherwise - often in conditions of incredible adversity. She hears about the challenges they have faced, the choices they have made and how they have managed to survive and on occasion, to thrive.

Archive courtesy of: UNHCR
Producer: Craig Templeton Smith

(Photo: Shahad and her family)

How Syrian refugees have found new lives in Canada and Lebanon

Investigating global developments, issues and affairs.

The Syrian war has created one of the largest human displacements in history – with millions of people on the move seeking safety. For over 5 years, British-Lebanese journalist Zahra Mackaoui has been following the stories of a group of Syrians, who have scattered across the world in search of safety. She originally met and interviewed them in the early years of the long-running civil war.

In these documentaries, she revisits these refugees to hear how they have coped – or otherwise - often in conditions of incredible adversity. She hears about the challenges they have faced, the choices they have made and how they have managed to survive and on occasion, to thrive.

She starts with Hani, a young man who has become a national figure in his new homeland of Canada, where he sits on the National Youth Council. From there the story passes to Hani’s cousin Ayesha, who is in Lebanon, where life is often difficult. Also in Lebanon, she catches up with a young girl called Shahad. Her family home was destroyed by a missile and they are now living in abject poverty in a half-built university south of Beirut.

From there she travels to rural Sweden to meet Doaa Al-Zemal, who survived the sinking of a boat in the Mediterranean by clinging to a piece of wood. Her story has now been optioned for a film by Steven Spielberg. Also in Europe, Fewaz and his family have found refuge near Bremen – and though he is grateful for Germany’s hospitality, his children are finding it difficult to integrate. She ends the series with Faysal, who escaped to Turkey before returning to his home city of Kobani in Syria. The war there has finished but danger remains – and he himself lost a leg after stepping on a landmine.

The stories of six Syrian refugees across the world, followed over five years.

02Seeking Safety In Sweden And Germany2019052620190529 (WS)

For over five years, British-Lebanese journalist Zahra Mackaoui has been following the stories of a group of Syrians, who have scattered across the world in search of safety. She originally met and interviewed them in the early years of the long-running civil war in Syria.

Zahra travels to rural Sweden to meet Doaa al-Zamel, who survived the sinking of a boat in the Mediterranean by floating on an inflatable ring. Her story has now been optioned for a film by Steven Spielberg. Also in Europe, Fewaz and his family have found refuge near Bremen – and though he is grateful for Germany’s hospitality, he is finding it difficult to integrate. She ends the series with Faysal, who escaped to Turkey before returning to his home city of Kobani in Syria. The war there has finished but danger remains – and he himself was critically wounded.

(Photo: Doaa al-Zamel. Credit: Elena Dorfman, Archive/UNHCR)

The stories of six Syrian refugees across the world, followed over five years

Investigating global developments, issues and affairs.

For over five years, British-Lebanese journalist Zahra Mackaoui has been following the stories of a group of Syrians, who have scattered across the world in search of safety. She originally met and interviewed them in the early years of the long-running civil war in Syria.

Zahra travels to rural Sweden to meet Doaa al-Zemal, who survived the sinking of a boat in the Mediterranean by clinging to a piece of wood. Her story has now been optioned for a film by Steven Spielberg. Also in Europe, Fewaz and his family have found refuge near Bremen – and though he is grateful for Germany’s hospitality, his children are finding it difficult to integrate. She ends the series with Faysal, who escaped to Turkey before returning to his home city of Kobani in Syria. The war there has finished but danger remains – and he himself lost a leg after stepping on a landmine.

(Photo: Doaa al-Zemal. Credit: Elena Dorfman)