‘Stateless’ is a documentary that I directed and produced for the Belgian channel Canvas. It was broadcasted in two episodes, part of the TV-series Vranckx.
Short synopsis: Majd Khalifeh is 28 years old, has lived in Belgium for 7 years, speaks Dutch fluently and cracks Belgian jokes like no other. Yet Majd is not Belgian. Nor is he is Turkish, Moroccan, Iraqi or Afghan. Majd is stateless since birth. Officially he has no nationality and no homeland, but in reality he does. He calls himself Palestinian. In 1948 –during the Arab-Israeli war- his family was expelled from the area around Haifa –a city now part of Israel. Until today, Majd and his family are barred from returning. Obtaining a visa is impossible; let alone a residence permit. Still, after numerous times of moving from country to country and after filling out masses of paperwork, he did it. Thanks to his Belgian residence permit and the support of a NGO he was granted an Israeli tourist visa. As a tourist Majd can visit his own country for the first time in his life. It’s his goal to find the house where his family used to live and to discover the cinema that was run by his grandfather. Xander and Pieter Stockmans –two good friends and colleagues- follow Majd during his unforgettable journey. Along the way Majd encounters the political and religious complexity of the country, and tries to understand both sides of the story each time. ‘Stateless’ shows Majd’s quest for his roots and homeland.