Ken Loach, Roger Waters and Brian Eno urge Israel Eurovision boycott in letter
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Ken Loach, Roger Waters and Brian Eno urge Israel Eurovision boycott in letter

More than 140 entertainers urge a snub of the Jewish state when it hosts the international singing competition in May

Ken Loach, Roger Waters, Brian Eno and Mike Leigh, among 140+ artists who signed a letter against Israel hosting the Eurovision
Ken Loach, Roger Waters, Brian Eno and Mike Leigh, among 140+ artists who signed a letter against Israel hosting the Eurovision

Directors Ken Loach and Mike Leigh and musicians Roger Waters and Brian Eno are among the high profile figures calling for a boycott of a Eurovision Song Contest hosted byIsrael.

A letter published in The Guardian backed an appeal from Palestinian artists to boycott the competition, which will be held in the country next year.

It said: “We, the undersigned artists from Europe and beyond, support the heartfelt appeal from Palestinian artists to boycott the Eurovision Song Contest 2019 hosted byIsrael.

“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.”

Other signatories include novelist Yann Martel, actress Julie Christie, writer and director Peter Kosminsky and British band Wolf Alice.

The 2019 competition is due to be held in Israel after the 2018 contest was won byIsrael entry Netta with her song Toy.

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