Reporters

On the refugee trail from Afghanistan to Germany

France 24

FRANCE 24 brings you an exclusive documentary from the refugee road to Europe. This is the extraordinary tale of a one-way journey from Afghanistan to Europe. Our reporter followed Massoud, a young Afghan man, on his heroic and dramatic odyssey crossing seven borders to finally reach Germany.

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For this documentary, I pretended to be a refugee alongside Massoud, a 27-year-old Afghan whom I met while working on a previous report in Herat, in western Afghanistan. Threatened by the Taliban, he had to flee to Germany, alone. I was there for the heartbreaking moment when he had to say goodbye to his family.

I accompany Massoud, or rather attempt to, as we follow the dangerous refugee route to Europe. We walk the suburbs of Istanbul late at night together seeking out the people smugglers. We also have to endeavour to arrange a meeting and try to convince them to agree to being filmed without being paid. When they refuse, we use hidden cameras, or follow them from a safe distance with the help of Massoud, who sends me his GPS at regular intervals.

The first time we are separated is in Turkey, while crossing the Aegean Sea towards Greece, and a second time trying to reach Macedonia. The final time I lose him is on entering Croatia.

The whole experience felt like a manhunt, and I feel sure I would have failed to make this documentary if Massoud had not been by my side.

Massoud, who safely reached Germany almost a month ago, is still waiting for his asylum application to be examined. If it is granted, his life can finally begin.

 

A documentary by Clément Gargoullaud, with Constantin Simon. 

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