Origins of STOLEN
In September 2006, with the co-operation of the Polisario, we went to the camps to make a film about a family reunion. After 10 days of being introduced by Polisario officials to women who were to take part in a UN Family Reunion Program, we met Fetim.
This interview was recorded in 2007, at the time Saltana was fighting in court to remain in Spain. When Saltana was 6, she was taken from Mauritania to the Polisario camps by Gueiwarra El Bardi, a ‘white’ woman. Saltana lived in the camps as the slave for El Bardi’s family for the next 3 years. Saltana has now won the right to remain in Spain, she lives like any other teenager in the world and plans to go to University.
Saharawi children insulting black children
I was going to the shop with Aminatou and her cousin Tara when the other ‘white’ children started insulting them, they called Aminatou a monkey. This incident brought to my memory what a Polisario leader, jokingly said to us, “Fetim’s younger daughter looked like a monkey.”
Salem Mulaha’s Story, Western Sahara
This is an extended version of a scene from Stolen. It tells the story of one family trying to find their daughter lost to slavery for more 30 years. They live in Laayoune, Western Sahara. Salem Mulaha, which tanslates literally as “happy to be with my master” lives only 10 minutes away with a “white” family.
Mull El Eid Story, Western Sahara
Mull El Eid doesn’t know where her three children are. She was forced to leave her master’s house when she was too old to work. As payment for her freedom her master collects her pension from the Moroccan government. She has nowhere to live.
M’Seida’s story, Western Sahara
M’Seida was stolen from her family as a small child. Her children have been stolen from her and live in the Polisario refugee camps with their “white” masters. She has been unable to register for the UN family reunion program because she has a different name to her children.