Student - October 12, 2010

Marked by war violence

An ex-student from Wageningen interviewed women and children rapists in the Democratic Republic of Congo to produce the prize-winning documentary 'Weapon of War'. She will be present at the screening of the film in the Leeuwenborch today.

Nynke in Congo
Nynke Douma, who studied international development studies in Wageningen, is the field producer of the award-winning documentary 'Weapon of War'. A penetrating film about mass rape during the conflict in the Democratic Republic of Congo, it is a sequel to the documentary 'Fighting the Silence' in which rape victims told their stories.
The events in Congo were terrible. Why did you give such wrongdoers the chance to speak?
'In 'Weapon of War', it's the culprits' turn to talk. Congolese rebels and soldiers reveal why they rape. Drug-taking, superstitions, war strategies and the absence of a working legal system blur the boundary between good and bad. The rapists' side of the story delves into the causes of the terrible sexual violence and can therefore help towards finding a sustainable solution.'
What was your role in the making of the documentary?
'As a field producer, I helped to come up with the storyline, I made preparations for the production in Congo and I did the interviews. I've been working for years in Congo and therefore know the country and the language well. So the twin sisters Ilse and Femke asked me to help in making the film.'
You talked to people whose conscience is plagued by these most atrocious crimes. Was it difficult?
'The work was of course a confrontation at times. We were dealing with brutal rapists. On the other hand, you realize too that they're also human, marked by the violence of war, the gruesome acts they have committed and the difficult situations in which they live in. The culprits often have regrets. Most of them are keen to tell their story.'
Weapon of War will be shown on Tuesday 12 October at 18:30 hours in the Leeuwenborch. Nynke Douma will be present too. For more information, check the site.           

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