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Belkacem Hadjadj wins documentary prize

Algerian film maker, Belkacem Hadjadj has taken the first prize for Best documentary at the second Arab Screen Independent Film Festival (ASIFF) recently held in Doha, Qatar.

Algerian film maker, Belkacem Hadjadj has taken the first prize for Best documentary at the second Arab Screen Independent Film Festival (ASIFF) recently held in Doha, Qatar. Mr Hadjadj walked away from the seven day festival, sponsored by Al Jazeera, with a US$10,000 prize for his film, ‘A Woman Taxi Driver In Sidi Bel-Abbes.’

The festival took place in the Arab world for the first time, having been founded by in London by Libyan exile Mohamed Maklouf in 1999.
"The first festival took place in London and was a fairly small event sponsored by Al Jazeera,” says Maklouf. They then asked me to run a second festival in Doha (Al Jazeera's home) which we have with great success.”

The festival attracted young Arab film makers from across the globe with visitors from Japan, Canada and Norway amongst others.
Maklouf describes the seven day festival as 'historic,' not just because the festival was the first forum in the region for young Arabs in the region, but because the films were shown uncensored.

ASIFF also attracted media coverage from around the world with film crews from China's Channel 1 and Italian TV covering the event.

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