Palestinian official says holding Eurovision contest in Israel an attempt to whitewash occupation

RAMALLAH, Minister of Culture Ehab Bseiso warned on Monday against using cultural events to whitewash the Israeli occupation and its violations against the Palestinian people.

Bseiso was referring to holding the Eurovision contest in Israel in 2019, which he warned that if held in Israel, it would be a crime against the Palestinian people and culture.

We call on all cultural promoters in Europe and elsewhere to make culture a tool for justice and not a tool for oppression, he said in a press conference in Ramallah.

He said Israel regularly violates Palestinian rights in the occupied territories, particularly for artists and creative people by either restricting their movement, arresting them for their writings and closing cultural institutions.

He said that any cultural event that does not agree with international references on Palestine are not acceptable and serve the occupation.

We look for Eurovision as a contest to promote culture and art, he said. Therefore, any act by Eurovision that does not agree with international law is going to serve the occupation and its goals, he said.

The Minister of Culture called on the European participants in the next Eurovision contest to pay attention to the suffering and agony of our people. To hold this event is a step toward accepting the violations of the occupation.

Bseiso praised the European artists who signed a petition calling on Eurovision not to hold its event in Israel.

This document by European artists is proof that Palestine is not alone, he said.

We do not want events that present only half the scene and hide the other half, he said. They should present the whole scene, especially the Palestinian part.

Source: Palestinian News and Info Agency