Dutch filmmaker pleads for Guinean
18 September 2007, AMSTERDAM (AFP) - Dutch filmmaker Ingeborg Beugel pleaded Friday with France to allow a Guinean student she has supported since making an award-winning documentary with him to start his studies in the country.
18 September 2007
AMSTERDAM (AFP) - Dutch filmmaker Ingeborg Beugel pleaded Friday with France to allow a Guinean student she has supported since making an award-winning documentary with him to start his studies in the country.
"I want to make a moral appeal to France to get him a visa because there are no other possibilities of appeal," Beugel told AFP.
Three days before he was set to leave for France, Ibrahim Diallo had his visas request denied by the French consul in Conakry, Jean-Claude Rubio.
Despite repeated requests from Beugel and another from the dean of the faculty of law of the University of Limoges, where Diallo was accepted, Rubio will give no reason for the decision.
"I have worked with him and supported him for the last seven years, everything was in place, he was accepted with flying colours in Limoges, we raised the money, I am acting as his guarantor, and just as we reach the finish line the consul slams the door in our faces. It is so unjust," Beugel said.
Beugel met Diallo in 2000 when she was making a documentary in the slums of Conakry about the origins of two Guinean teenagers who made headlines in 1999 after they were found dead on a Belgian plane.
Stowaways Yaguine Koita and Fode Tounkara had a letter with them addressed to "Dear Europe" saying they wanted to study in Europe since there is no education in their country.
In Beugel's documentary, "Dear Europe", Diallo appears as a kind of guide for the dead boys, showing what their lives had been like.
Beugel and her filmcrew put him through school and Diallo was awarded a bachelors degree in international law from a Conakry university.
Now he wants to do a masters degree, which is not possible in Guinea.
"After years of struggle and good behaviour, with the support of so many Dutch and other sponsors, don't I have the right to be educated?' Diallo asked in a personal plea to the consul Monday.
French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner promised Monday to try to reverse the refusal but admitted that he had no power to do so.
"Unfortunately I am no longer the one who deals with this type of visa and with immigration," but Immigration Minister Brice Hortefeux, he said after talks with his visiting Dutch counterpart Maxime Verhagen.
The case comes a month after six French policemen escorting two Guineans expelled from France were molested on arriving at Conakry, sparking a minor diplomatic incident between the two countries.
[Copyright AFP 2007]
Subject: Dutch news, French news