Israeli artists have called for a boycott of a pop culture festival in Berlin because the country’s Israeli embassy is a co-sponsor.
An open letter urging others not to take part in the Pop-Kultur event was posted on the ‘Artists for Palestine UK’ blog last week and signed by professionals including performance artists, musicians, authors, film directors and architects.
The signatories, some of whom also called for a boycott of this year’s Eurovision Song Contest held in Tel Aviv, are based in countries such as the United States, France, Denmark, Germany and Israel.
Eyal Weizman, professor of spatial and visual cultures and founding director of the Centre for Research Architecture at Goldsmiths, University of London, appeared to be the only UK-based signatory.
“We support the Palestinian call to boycott Pop-Kultur Berlin Festival 2019 given its complicity with Israel’s racist regime,” they wrote.
“So long as Pop Kultur continues to have the Israeli embassy as a partner, all appearances at the festival will be exploited by the Israeli government as part of its efforts to whitewash its occupation and rebrand itself through culture.”
British musician Brian Eno has previously called for a boycott of the festival, and last year the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI) derided organisers as “arrogantly” dismissing concerns.
Last year the British bands ‘Shopping’ and ‘Gwenno’ cancelled their performances at the event, as did British musician Richard Dawson, but organisers said: “We are not intimidated by boycotts.”
Thank you for helping to make Jewish News the leading source of news and opinion for the UK Jewish community. Today we're asking for your invaluable help to continue putting our community first in everything we do.
Unlike other Jewish media, we do not charge for content. That won’t change. Because we are free, we rely on advertising to cover our costs. This vital lifeline, which has dropped in recent years, has fallen further due to coronavirus.
For as little as £5 a month you can help sustain the vital work we do in celebrating and standing up for Jewish life in Britain.
Jewish News holds our community together and keeps us connected. Like a synagogue, it’s where people turn to feel part of something bigger. It also proudly shows the rest of Britain the vibrancy and rich culture of modern Jewish life.
You can make a quick and easy one-off or monthly contribution of £5, £10, £20 or any other sum you’re comfortable with.
100% of your donation will help us continue celebrating our community, in all its dynamic diversity...
Being a community platform means so much more than producing a newspaper and website. One of our proudest roles is media partnering with our invaluable charities to amplify the outstanding work they do to help us all.
There’s no shortage of oys in the world but Jewish News takes every opportunity to celebrate the joys too, through projects like Night of Heroes, 40 Under 40 and other compelling countdowns that make the community kvell with pride.
In the first collaboration between media outlets from different faiths, Jewish News worked with British Muslim TV and Church Times to produce a list of young activists leading the way on interfaith understanding.
Royal Mail issued a stamp honouring Holocaust hero Sir Nicholas Winton after a Jewish News campaign attracted more than 100,000 backers. Jewish News also produces special editions of the paper highlighting pressing issues including mental health and Holocaust remembrance.
In an age when news is readily accessible, Jewish News provides high-quality content free online and offline, removing any financial barriers to connecting people.
Voice of our community to wider society
The Jewish News team regularly appears on TV, radio and on the pages of the national press to comment on stories about the Jewish community. Easy access to the paper on the streets of London also means Jewish News provides an invaluable window into the community for the country at large.
We hope you agree all this is worth preserving.