CPH:DOX Review: The Caviar Connection

Even today with the aid of a global community and the internet, many of the former Soviet republics are still a mystery to many in the Western world. This is particularly the case with regimes that have kept close ties with Moscow. While they’re ostensibly democracies on the surface it doesn’t take much digging to uncover an underbelly of corruption. Azerbaijan is a prime example of a nation which likes to portray a shiny image to the outside world but on the inside it’s rotten.

In 2012, the Central Asian country became famous for its ‘caviar diplomacy’. The lobbying strategy of bribing politicians and big wigs in international organisations with gifts, presents and money worked very well for them indeed. Especially for President Aliyev and his family who have managed to amass huge personal fortunes under the dirty noses of European Council members. The Caviar Connection follows Khadija Ismailova and other brave investigative journalists determined to hold their leaders to account.

The Caviar Connection underlines the value of, and vital need for, honest and reliable independent reporting in any society. Benoit Bringer’s film documents these abuses or power both domestically and from those entrusted with upholding international law. Highlighting the dangerous position journalists place themselves and their families in if they put their heads above the parapet. The Caviar Connection is a timely reminder of the vital role reportage plays in any democracy.

The Caviar Connection screens at CPH:DOX.

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