KATHMANDU, Oct. 3 (Xinhua) -- The Nepali government banned the screening of three Sri Lankan films at the Film South Asia (FSA), festival of Southasian documentaries upon the request of the Sri Lankan government, FSA said in a press statement on Thursday.
The FSA had scheduled to screen Broken, The Story of One and No Fire Zone, all by Sri Lankan filmmakers at the festival that kicked off Thursday, but was forced to pull all of them out after receiving orders from the Nepali government which was asked by the Sri Lankan government to stop the screenings.
According to Nayantara Gurung Kakshapati of FSA, the FSA received the orders from the Ministry of Information to stop the screening, but no exact reasons were given for the move.
As a protest, the FSA will screen the movies to a private audience at a different venue on Saturday. The films, however, will remain in contention for the award, which carries a cash prize of 2,000 U.S. dollars for the winner, added Kakshapati.
"FSA protests this unwarranted intrusion into the cultural sphere, an action that goes against the freedom of expression and the right of documentary filmmakers to exhibit their work. This obstructs our festival's goal of promoting regional understanding in Southasia," said a press statement from FSA China Kanak Mani Dixit.
The FSA is a biennial film festival that has been taking place in Kathmandu since 2007 with a goal to popularize documentaries so that they entertain, inform and changes live.
A total of 55 films from India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Burma, Afghanistan and Nepal have been selected in this year's festival out of 388 entries.