Three Chinese films have been withdrawn from this year’s Melbourne International Film Festival in protest of the inclusion of a documentary about Rebiya Kadeer — the leader of the World Uygur Congress.
The films — “Perfect Life,” “Petition” and “Cry Me a River,” — had been expected to be screened in the mid-August festival, according to the Age newspaper in Melbourne.
But in a letter to the festival, Jia Zhangke, producer of the film “Perfect Life” and whose company also produced “Cry Me a River,” said he decided to withdraw both movies to protest Kadeer’s attendance at the event.
“Petition,” a film directed by Zhao Liang, has also been withdrawn from the festival.
Jia said most of the families of those killed in the deadly July 5 riot in Urumqi, the capital of northwest China’s Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, believe Kadeer’s World Uygur Congress was behind the violence.