Emmy Award-winning filmmaker Deeyah Khan is to launch her eagerly-anticipated new documentary on ITV’s current affairs program Exposure later this month.
The film, titled ‘Jihad’, is a hard-hitting exploration of jihadism and the radicalization of young Muslims in the West and the eternal migrant struggle of trying to straddle two different cultures.
Khan spent two years interviewing some of the most influential and controversial figures in the Western jihadi movement, examining the causes, effects and solutions to radicalisation.
Considered by western intelligence agencies as the most potent threat to the West, the radicalisation of young second and third generation Muslims in the West is attributed not only to Western action – or inaction – in the Occupied Territories, Iraq, Libya, Syria and elsewhere but also to the rise of groups such as Islamic State (IS).
According to some estimates more than 2000 British jihadists are believed currently fighting for IS.
Pakistani-origin Khan, who was born in Norway, is widely regarded for her activism on issues such as free speech, women’s rights and peace, and is known for bringing all of those perspectives, as well as her experiences as a South Asian woman growing up in Norway, to bear on her work.
“As a young musician in Oslo, I was hounded, harassed, and forced into exile by angry men who felt that women should not sing, and that music, even the beautiful millennium-old traditions of South Asian music, went against their austere vision of Islam.
“Angry men like them are today in Syria and Iraq, smashing the treasures of Mesopotamian antiquity, instituting a brutal regime of floggings and executions, assassinations of professional women, and the rape of enslaved women. Parents are hiding the passports of their children to prevent them from flying to Syria to join with an organisation that beheads and burns and destroys. I wanted to find out why young people wanted to be part of such brutality”, Khan adds.
‘Jihad’, which will receive its world premier on Exposure on 15 June, is the follow up to Khan’s Emmy and Peabody Award-winning documentary ‘Banaz: A Love Story’ which chronicled the life and tragic death of Banaz Mahmod, the young Iraqi woman who was murdered in 2006 by her family in a so-called ‘Honour’ killing.
‘Jihad’ – ITV Exposure, Monday 15 June at 10.40 pm.