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POV: Special Flight

Airs Monday, July 1, 2013 at 11 p.m. on KPBS TV

Above: Dieudonné looks through the fence at Frambois detention center.

Watch a dramatic account of the plight of undocumented foreigners at the Frambois detention center in Geneva, Switzerland, and of the wardens who struggle to reconcile humane values with the harsh realities of a strict deportation system.

Courtesy of Fernand Melgar

Pitchou, Blacky, Wandifa, Abdoul and Dieudonné pose for a photograph in Frambois detention center.

Courtesy of Denis Jutzeler

Inmates exercise in Framboise detention center, Geneva, Switzerland.

The 25 featured inmates are among the thousands of asylum seekers and illegal immigrants imprisoned without charge or trial and facing deportation to their native countries, where they fear repression or even death.

"Special Flight," made in Switzerland, is an intimate and heart-wrenching exposé of the contradictions between Switzerland’s Western ideals and the rule of law that many of its citizens may not fully grasp.

It gives audiences of all nationalities an opportunity to gain greater understanding of the people who seek freedom and a better life in a foreign country—and those who must implement the law and turn them away.

"Special Flight" is by Fernand Melgar. This film is a production of Climage in association with Radio Télévision Suisse (RTS) and ARTE G.E.I.E.

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Special Flight - Preview

Witness the plight of undocumented foreigners and the wardens at a detention center in Switzerland. 7/1/2013

Special Flight: Filmmaker Interview with Fernand Melgar

Director Fernand Melgar discusses the immigration system in Switzerland in regards to people seeking political asylum and refugee status.