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ONE WORLD 2012: The Boxing Girls of Kabul

Date: 15 May 2012 8:00 PM - 9:30 PM

Venue: BOZAR - Palais des Beaux-Arts (STUDIO), 23 Rue Ravenstein, 1000 Bruxelles

Film by Ariel J. Nasr / Canada / 2011 / 52 min (in competition).

  • The number of free tickets to this screening is limited. If registration is full, please purchase a ticket at the BOZAR (Palais des Beaux-Arts, 23 Rue Ravenstein, 1000 Bruxelles) or at the BOZAR website.


The main characters of this film are three sporty Afghan girls who dedicate themselves to boxing. They train rigorously at an athletics stadium in Kabul, where girls were publicly lynched during the Taliban era for “sins” such as playing sports. For decades in Afghanistan, women were denied the right to play sports, even after the fall of the Taliban, the sad truth is that girls who pursue a sport may be kidnapped by Islamist radicals and subsequently maimed. Despite the risks, Shahla, Shabnam and Sadaf train hard, participate in international tournaments, and dream of winning a medal at the next Olympics. Sadaf is a talented 16-year-old boxer who is not afraid of Afghan Television’s cameras. She tries to set an example to inspire other women in her country to compete in sports at the highest level. This move illustrates the complicated status of women in contemporary Afghan society who exhibit a great deal of courage while fighting for basic rights.

Guests will include Šimon Pánek, director of People in Need, Jessica Zimmerman, coordinator – Parliamentarians Network for Conflict Prevention at EastWest Institute, and Bettina Muscheidt – European External Action Service (EEAS), Afghanistan Desk.

This event is being held in cooperation with Human Rights Without Frontiers.


Film trailer.

This screening is part of the One World in Brussels 2012 film festival.