Asylum Seekas / Asielzoeka’s

country, yearAsielzoeka's_Still_1
Netherlands, 2014


running time

directed by
Sergej Kreso

Dutch, Armenian, Dari, Bosnian


On Facebook they call themselves ‘asylum seekas’: youngsters who have fled to The Netherlands and have spent their entire youth in immigration centers. Now they miss that period in their lives. While a chill wind blew through the Dutch immigration policy, the center was their home. In that secluded environment they spent day and night together, played and formed intense friendships.

After years of living in uncertainty many have ended up in villages and suburbs, spread out throughout the country. Suddenly miles apart, they each have to find their own way. Through social media they connect and share their hopes, thoughts and memories.

Filmmaker Sergej Kreso, who himself once fled from Bosnia to The Netherlands, takes us into the world of four asylum seekas who stand at a crossroad between the past and a future they will have to create in The Netherlands. This documentary makes a cinematic journey through their lives, in which beautiful and painful memories of their days at the immigration center are intercut with their dreams and ambitions. While one works on a career in music or dance, another dreams of the ideal husband. But whatever the future holds in store for them, these asylum seekas all stand for one thing: they are here, they speak out and nothing will get them down.

Sergej Kresoabout the author
Sergej Kreso (Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina, 1963) graduated at Faculty of Political Sciences in Sarajevo, Department of Journalism. Kreso worked as a radio-broadcasting journalist at RTV Sarajevo and Radio Doboj. In 1993, during the war in Bosnia, he left the country and went to the Netherlands where he continued his journalistic activities for radio and TV. In addition to his work as a journalist he writes articles and essays. Migration, human rights and refugee topics are his main subjects.

Filmography: Simfonie voor een Straatmuzikant (2004), Ulica grafita (2007), Jack, the Balkans & I (2008), Kaffeefarht ins Krematorium (2011), Vraem Luuj (2012), Asylum Seekas (2014).