A scene from "City of Ghosts," Matthew Heineman's collaboration with “Raqqa is Being Silently Slaughtered,” one of the Syrian films premiering at Sundance.
Photo courtesy of the Sundance film festival
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In early 2014, Daesh (ISIS) entered the northern Syrian city of Raqqa, declaring it their capital and starting a reign of terror marked by grisly public executions.Student Abdel-Aziz al-Hamza and his friends decided to form "Raqqa is Being Silently Slaughtered," a band of courageous media activists who risk their lives to document Daesh atrocities.Their work is chronicled in "City of Ghosts," by Oscar-nominated director Matthew Heineman, one of a raft of films on conflict and militant terror in the Middle East that premiered this week at the annual Sundance Film Festival.Elsewhere at Sundance, "Last Men in Aleppo," a documentary on the Syrian city's "White Helmet" first responders, also got its premiere.Daesh's influence has spread far beyond the Middle East, and last week the festival screened a startling film about the kidnapping of 276 girls from the Nigerian town of Chibok by Daesh-affiliated militants Boko Haram.
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