Dozens of artists call for boycott of 2019 Eurovision Song Contest in Israel

RAMALLAH, Dozens of high profile musicians, writers, actors, directors, choreographers, novelists, poets, DJs among others, have signed a letter calling for a boycott of the 2019 Eurovision Song Contest, which is scheduled to be hosted by and held in Israel in 2019.

The letter, which was published on The Guardian, supported an appeal from Palestinian artists to boycott the festival, saying that until Palestinians enjoy freedom, there should be no business with Israel.

Among those who signed the letter are musicians Roger Waters, Brian Eno, Nosizwe, Bugge Wesseltoft, Lars Klevstrand, Trond Ingebretsen, Jose Mario Branco, Chullage, Dror Feiler, Christy Moore, Charlie McGettigan, Kimmo Pohjonen, Paleface, among others, actors Candy Bowers, Daan Hugaert, Marijke Pinoy, Chokri Ben Chikha, Tove Bornhoeft, Anne Marie Helger, Tommi Korpela, Krista Kosonen, novelists Manuela Bosco, Gerard Mordillat, Jose Luis Peixoto, Michel Buhler, and many others more.

We, the undersigned artists from Europe and beyond, support the heartfelt appeal from Palestinian artists to boycott the Eurovision Song Contest 2019 hosted by Israel, the letter said. Until Palestinians can enjoy freedom, justice and equal rights, there should be no business-as-usual with the state that is denying them their basic rights.

On 14 May, days after Israel’s Eurovision win, the Israeli army killed 62 unarmed Palestinian protesters in Gaza, including six children, and injured hundreds, most with live ammunition. Amnesty International has condemned Israel’s shoot-to-kill-or-maim policy and Human Rights Watch described the killings as unlawful and calculated.

Eurovision 2019 should be boycotted if it is hosted by Israel while it continues its grave, decades-old violations of Palestinian human rights. We understand that the European Broadcasting Union is demanding that Israel finds a non-divisive location for the 2019 Eurovision. It should cancel Israel’s hosting of the contest altogether and move it to another country with a better human rights record. Injustice divides, while the pursuit of dignity and human rights unites, the letter concluded.

Recently, a number of musicians and artists cancelled their performances in the Israeli Meteor Festival, including Lana Del Rey, Shlohmo, Leon Vynehall, Selda, Volvox, Of Montreal, DJ Python, and Mall Grab after calls were made by activists and boycott organizations such as the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement.

BDS has frequently made calls for many artists to cancel events in Israel, to which some of the world’s top artists, including Roger Walters and Stevie Wonder, have accepted the call.

Source: Palestine News & Info Agency