According to Cíntia Gil, one of the directors of DocLisboa, the festival was pressured by the Ukrainian embassy in Portugal to remove from the program the film "Their own Republic", by Aliona Polunina, selected for the international competition, claiming that "it gives voice to an organization terrorist".
In the letter, released by the embassy on the social network Twitter, Ambassador Inna Ohnivets laments that DocLisboa has decided to display a film that "is a demonstration of support for terrorism" because it deals with the Vostok battalion, "illegal armed training of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation. "
"I think that the film by Aliona Polunina is proof of its support for the Kremlin's aggressive policy towards Ukraine," reads the letter, sent to the Apordoc association, which organizes DocLisboa and Culturgest of the rooms that host it.
Cíntia Gil also revealed that DocLisboa met with a representative of the Turkish embassy at her request, because in the synopses of two films ("Yol: The Full Version" and "Armenia, Cradle of Humanity") the expressions "annihilation of the Kurdish people "and, referring to Armenia," the site of one of the most violent genocides of the last century. "
"DocLisboa is not a neutral festival, we have a political position and we do not accept interference. It is the first time I remember this kind of situation happening. We make a notice, not a complaint, and invite those responsible to participate in the debates, end of each film, "Cíntia Gil told Lusa.
According to Cíntia Gil, the Turkish representative did not ask to remove the films, but rather those synopses that appear in the programming.
The Lusa agency has tried to obtain a clarification from the Turkish embassy in Lisbon.
In a statement released today, DocLisboa recalls that it was created to "promote and disseminate the culture of documentary film, in its freedom, diversity and witnessing strength."
"Doclisboa is entirely free, autonomous in its programming, and this team will continue to strive to do so. We only have partners as entities that respect the values we also defend, and which are the values of democracy, free expression, and justice, "the statement said.
The 16th. edition of DocLisboa, a film festival dedicated to the documentary, will take place from October 18 to 28 in various rooms of the capital.