The extraordinary story of a young reporter in war-torn Kobanî.
Out of the smoke and dust of battle came Radio Kobanî, the brainchild of 20-year-old Dilovan. A young Kurdish woman, Dilovan took it upon herself to document the final days of IS control, and the stories of refugees returning to their flattened homes. Despite her harrowing experiences, Dilovan’s positivity is resilient. Her belief is vindicated by the strength of Kobanî’s citizens and their capacity to collaborate in the face of destruction.
As the YPG, led by the inimitable Meryem Kobani, began to liberate parts of the city, Dilovan and thousands of others decided to return home. Radio Kobanî was born. Dilovan interviews the full tapestry of Kobanî's displaced, from widowed mothers to musicians, to those straight from the frontline. One sniper is haunted by those he killed. "Sometimes I discovered that they were children. That hurt me very much...Sometimes they appear in my dreams".
As more return, the clear up operation begins. The diggers clear the collapsed buildings to reveal countless corpses. Horrified survivors look on, but they can now be afforded a dignified burial. Soon roads are cleared, shops are open, people are in the streets. "The streets of Kobanî smell of love again... the breeze of love dances on the heatwaves of summer", delights Dilovan. As normality returns she picnics in the park with her friends and they tease the gawking boys. "Look at those staring boys, as if they've never seen a woman!"
Radio Kobanî is at once a darkly powerful documentation of one of the bloodiest battles in the fight against IS, as well as an inspirational tale of healing, hope and love.