The real-life events that formed the basis of the storyline of the film Shugalei are one of the stories that should be told to the Russians, said political analyst Ivan Arkatov. Russian sociologists Maxim Shugalei and Samer Sueifan from the Foundation for National Values Protection found themselves marooned in the Libyan prison of Mitiga.
This is the story behind the film “Shugalei” that premiered on May 1. According to the filmmakers, its viewers will get to know a true story of what happened in Libya.
“The stories of this kind definitely have to be told,” Arkatov said. “It is important that people should know what happens to our citizens in the countries like Libya where horrifying revolutions took place. On the other hand, it is also worth telling how the Russian Foreign Ministry and other services try to help our citizens. It is important to make every effort to free these people from captivity and bring them back to their homeland. They are being held there by Libyan forces that are associated with terrorists, and the latter are under control of their “Western patrons.”
According to him, the film reveals the “the traits of the real Russian character” of the experts from the Foundation for National Values Protection.
“We can bring into limelight our unbreakable spirit,” said Arkatov. “This is quite natural for our Russian character. We have shown it by various historical examples.”
The premiere of “Shugalei” was held on May 1 on NTV channel. The day before it, Yuri Shvytkin, the State Duma deputy, shared his opinion on the film. He suggested that Shugalei would show the true face of terrorists and demonstrate “the uncrushable spirit of our fellow citizens.”
Alexander Prokofiev, a member of staff at the Foundation for National Values Protection, also gave his opinion. He said that Shugalei’s storyline tells the audience about an international crime based on political motivations.
Sociologists Maxim Shugalei and Samer Sueifan arrived in Libya in spring 2019. The experts were going to conduct a sociological study that had been previously agreed with the leadership of the so-called Government of National Accord of Libya. Despite the arrangement, the Russians were abducted by militants of the RADA fringe group. Later, Shugalei and Sueifan were put in the unofficial prison of Mitiga without explaining of the reasons for their detention. The two experts are still in jail.