On Tuesday night, we had the pleasure of hosting the premiere of 'Death at Sea' at Everyman Cinema, Kings Cross, a deeply moving film that delves into the harrowing story of Eritara Aati Kaierua, who tragically passed away onboard the Taiwanese-flagged fishing vessel, the Win Far 636, in March 2020.
The premiere marked a significant step in raising awareness about observer safety and the pressing questions surrounding Eritara's case.
"In creating 'Death at Sea’, the goal has always been to raise awareness around the issue of observer safety and Eritara's case specifically - this premiere felt like a great first step in that direction," shared Sara Pipernos, Producer and Director.
Inspired by our investigations since 2019 into unexplained deaths and disappearances of fisheries observers, the documentary delves deeper into the challenges faced by the guardians of the world's seas and oceans, questioning accountability and justice in the maritime industry.
'Death at Sea's' gripping narrative and thought-provoking content captivated the audience, earning it resounding applause and establishing it as a ground-breaking work of film-based advocacy.
Deborah Layde, CEO of The Seafarers Charity, said, "Having witnessed the screening of 'Death at Sea,' I am deeply moved by the film's poignant portrayal of the tragic death of Eritara and the wider challenges faced by fisheries observers. The dedication and sacrifices of these individuals, like those of seafarers, often go unnoticed, and this film brings their vital role to the forefront with great sensitivity and underscores the importance of advocating for human rights at sea."
Our Executive Chair, Matthew Vickers, added that "Eritara and his family deserve justice, and we believe that this film can be a powerful tool for holding the responsible parties accountable and sparking systemic change. We hope that Eritara's story will resonate with audiences worldwide, inspiring collective action and raising awareness that leads to the necessary reforms in the maritime industry."
Its initial success is a testament to the collective commitment to raising awareness about human rights abuses in the maritime industry, and we are pleased to announce that Human Rights at Sea International (HRASi) will now take Eritara's case forward as part of its Justice Project, dedicating its resources to ensure accountability and justice for Eritara and his family.
"We were delighted with both the level of attendance and the public recognition of Sara Pipernos's directorship. Last night's premiere showcased the critical importance of film-based advocacy in further profiling investigative work around human rights abuses occurring at sea," said David Hammond, Executive Director, HRASi
We want to thank all the guests who attended the screening, sharing the collective commitment to raise awareness about human rights abuses at sea. We would also like to thank The Blue Marine Foundation and Pew Charitable Trusts for making the film possible, Sustainable Fisheries and Communities Trust (SFACT) for supporting the initial investigations and filmmaker Sara Pipernos for making ‘Death at Sea’ a reality.
The film is set to make waves globally as it continues to emphasise the need for accountability and respect for human rights at sea.
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Photo credit: David Hammond