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Aid But No State – The EU’s Role in the Middle East Conflict

Documentary, Palest. Territories/D/ES 2014/15, 58 Min. | Script & Directing: Sabrina Dittus | Completed
Camera: Vita Spiess | Editor: Christopher Kaps | Score: Springintgut | Production: Pepperlint & TAG/TRAUM with ZDF/arte, in cooperation with Al Jazeera Documentary Channel, IKON, NRK | Programming editors arte: Martin Pieper, Türkan Schirmer


Since the Oslo Accords of 1993 and 1995 over $ 25 billion in donor aid went to Palestine. This is, per capita, one of the highest levels of aid in the world. Officially the funds are aimed towards the building of institutions of a future democratic, independent and viable Palestinian State, existing side by side and in peace with Israel. This mantra has been stated in thousands of documents and brochures since 1993. Traditionally, the EU is the biggest donor to the Palestinian territories.

But after 20 years the results are disastrous. The prospect of a Palestinian State is further away then ever, the situation in the Palestinian territories is in many respects worse than before Oslo: The economic situation is difficult, a quarter of the population lives in poverty, unemployment rate in the Westbank is at nearly 17%, in Gaza even at 43%, the highest in the world. Only 18% of the Westbank are under Palestinian control. And the amount of water that Palestinians can drill from their own water ressources today is less than 20 years ago. Despite billions of dollars in donor aid that went into the water sector.

Our film investigates development and aid projects in the occupied Palestinian territories and takes a close look at the role of the EU in the Middle East. Payer, no player? That’s an often heard saying in Palestine when it comes to the EU, even within diplomatic circles.

“Put an end to European hypocrisy”, demands Miguel Moratinos in our film, former EU Special Representative for the Middle East Peace Process. Otherwise very soon it will be too late and we will have missed the great opportunity of peace.


TV-Premiere: September 29th, 23.40 hrs, on arte

Rerun: October 8th, 10.15 hrs

Arte +7: 29.9.-29.10.2015


Jan. 2017: globale Mittelhessen, Giessen & Gladenbach

Oct. 2016: Days Of Cinema: Palestine, Ramallah

Jan. 2016: globale Filmfestival Berlin

Oct & Nov. 2015: Brotfabrik Berlin


New Docs
Elina Kewitz
phone: +49-221-16819743


Sept. 26th: Screening of “Milliarden für den Stillstand” (“Aid But No State”) in naxos-Kino, Frankfurt/M., start 7.30pm , afterwards Q&A.

August 23rd: “Milliarden für den Stillstand” (“Aid But No State”) runs at globaLE in Leipzig, Open-Air, Richard-Wagner-Hain, afterwards Q&A.

July/August: “We Are Here: Young Gaza On Stage” runs at International Fünf Seen Filmfestival: on July 30th at 7pm in Gauting, on July 31st at 7pm and on August 1st at 6pm in Starnberg at Schlossberghalle, afterwards Q&A.

July 2nd, 2017: “Aid But No State. The EU’s Role in the Middle-East Conflict” runs at nbk (Berlin) as part of the #MovingThoughts screenings, part of the exhibition “Conditions of Political Choreography”, start 8.30pm.

May 13th: “Aid But No State” will be screened at the “Fernsehworkshop Entwicklungspolitik” in Frankfurt/Main, 4pm, location: Haus am Dom.

March 23rd and 24th, 2017: Brotfabrik Berlin screens “Wir sind hier. Vorhang auf für Gaza” (orig. “We Are Here. Young Gaza on Stage”), 6pm, afterwards Q&A.

Feb. 2nd: German Premiere of “We Are Here: Young Gaza on Stage”,  Salon of Rosa-Luxemburg-Stiftung, 7pm, Q&A after the screening.

January 23rd and 24th, 2017: “Aid But No State. The EU’s Role in the Middle-East Conflict” runs at globale Mittelhessen (in Gießen und Gladenbach).

Dec. 15th, 2016: “We Are Here. Young Gaza on Stage” premieres in Ramallah, Westbank (Mahmoud Darwish Museum, 5:00pm), on Dec. 20th in Gaza.

On Dec. 6, 2016 the nahost-forum bremen screens “Aid But No State: The EU’s Role in Middle East Conflict” (orig. “Milliarden für den Stillstand. Die Rolle der EU im Nahost-Konflikt”), start 7.30pm at Buergerhaus Weserterrassen (Osterdeich), with Q&A after the screening.