Générique vidéo du Forum

Press Release 8 September 2009

Awards :
The Film "The Living" and the book "Les Affameurs" (The Starvers)

Special Mention: The documentary "Des Terres pour les sans Terres"
(Land for the Landless)

The Ukranian documentary film "The Living", by Sergyi Bukovsky, was awarded the Grand Prize of Geneva, and the book " Les Affameurs", by Doan Bui, the Mirabaud Prize in the 25th Forum International Médias Nord-Sud (FIMNS), whose theme this year is the world food crisis.  The winners were anounced Tuesday evening in Geneva, in the presence of Micheline Calmy-Rey, Federal Counselor in charge of Foreign Affairs.

The documentary "The Living", directed by Sergyi Bukovsky, gives voice to the last survivors of the terrible famine in Ukraine between 1932-1933.  The film puts Stalin's use of famine as a weapon in perspective.  " A true cinematic vision and the discerning eye of the author, with a strong narrative and rare testimony; a hidden history which obliges us to stay vigilant", emphasized the jury presided by the director Daniel Schweizer.

A special mention was awarded by the jury to the Swiss documentary "Des terres pour les sans terre"  (land for the landless) directed by Joseph and Lotti Stoeckli. The film follows the adventure of a new occupation of land in Brasil through a long march by the farmers.  The jury wished to distinguish " a film full of humanism and empathy with a message of hope, in which the protagonists are filmed with humanity and dignity", as in "The Living".

The Mirabaud Prize, which recognizes the best written contribution on the Forum's theme, was given to the book "Les Affameurs, Voyage au coeur de la faim", (The Merchants of famine, Voyage to the heart of famine) by Doan Bui, a journalist for the Nouvel Observateur.  This essay is the fruit of two years of investigation around the world, from Senegal to China, passing through Indonesia, Geneva, and London.  " A lively and brilliant essay, based on field research, which clarifies the question of food security in the world" stated the jury presided by the journalist Michel Beuret.

For the official evening, the Federal Counselor Micheline Calmy-Rey gave a speech on international politics in which she reminded us that food security is one of the priorities of Swiss development cooperation, as important as climate change and migration, all tightly interwoven. 

On behalf of the Brasilian government the vice-minister Crispim Moreira, National Secretary for Food Security and Nutrition, presented the program to fight against hunger by aiding small farmers, initiated by president Lula.

The 25th Festival Médias Nord Sud, with the  theme of "World Hunger" can report a successful and influential event, with 9 roundtables, over 40 films projected, and various stands to promote awareness of world hunger and the food crisis.

Press Release 2 September 2009  

World Hunger at the heart of Medias Nord Sud 2009

The Forum International Médias Nord-Sud (FIMNS) consecrates its 25th edition to the problem of the world food crisis from the 7 to 9 September at the Center for International Conferences of Geneva (CICG).  With the theme of 'World Hunger', this platform for exchange offers the public over 10 roundtables, a competition of documentary films, and various stands to promote awareness of world hunger and the food crisis.

"Nearly a billion people on the planet cannot satisfy their hunger", the director Jean-Philippe Rapp reminds us, "particularly women and children.'" Poverty and price fluctuation have small growers by the throat, and these pressures are accentuated by agro-fuels and speculation.

Global warming, poor soil management, polluted water, and abuse of fertilizers are the factors which aggravate the situation.  Are hunger and impoverishment unavoidable?  Will these inequalities continue to be reinforced by the relations between the North and the South?

With these questions in mind, the Forum confronts different actors - states, agro-food businesses, international organisations, agricultural and consumer associations - in search of solutions.  Among the participants are Crispim Moreira, Brasil's National Secretary for Food and Nutritional Security, as well as the Swiss directors of Nestle and Migros.  

Micheline Calmy-Rey, Counselor Federal in charge of Foreign Affairs, is the guest of honor at the Official Soirée of FIMNS and will give a speech addressing international politics. The Direction Federal for Development and Cooperation (DDC), a FIMNS partner, will present it's global program for food security.  An evening will be dedicated to Brasil and its engagement against hunger.

Founded a quarter of a century ago, the FIMNS has committed itself to the analysis of future conféicts and complexities within durable development.  Following its new alternating schedule, the Forum has returned to Switzerland this year after last year's edition in India. The reflection about the food crisis will be prolonged in 2010 with a forum held in Africa, in a country related to this year's theme.

Jean-Phillipe Rapp
Director of FIMNS