Eurovision: More than 140 Artists call to Boycott the 2019 Edition in Israel

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More than 140 artists call to boycott the 2019 edition in Israel

140 international artists have signed a petition in support of the call of Palestinian artists to boycott the 2019 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest to be held in Israel …

A further upsurge in the organisation of Eurovision 2019. As Israel prepares to host the 64th Eurovision Song Contest in May 2019, more than 140 international artists have called this Friday to boycott the event, in a letter published in the British newspaper The Guardian this Friday, supporting “the sincere appeal of Palestinian artists”.

Signatories to this letter include Roger Waters, founding member and bassist of Pink Floyd, British directors Ken Loach and Mike Leigh, Finnish filmmaker Aki Kaurismäki, Canadian writer Yann Martel, author of The Odyssey of Pi , American actress Alia Shawkat, seen especially in the cult series Arrested Development. On the side of the French signatures, we find among others those of the comic book author and illustrator Tardi, the director of L’inconnu du Lac  Alain Guiraudie or the singer Elli Medeiros .

These artists request the transfer of Eurovision

“As long as the Palestinians can not enjoy freedom, justice and equal rights, there should be no deal with the state that denies them their fundamental rights,” they argue.

The signatories recall the tragic events of May 14, the day after the victory of the Israeli Netta Barzilai in Lisbon, where dozens of Palestinians were killed at the border between Israel and the Gaza Strip during protests against the inauguration of the United States Embassy in Jerusalem. “The Israeli army has killed 62 unarmed Palestinian protesters in Gaza,” they continue.

These artists believe that the contest must be boycotted as long as Israel continues “its serious human rights violations”. The artists request that the organization of the competition be transferred to another country.

Tel Aviv favorite to organise the contest

The host city of Eurovision 2019 will be designated by the end of September. According to the dedicated website created by the European Broadcasting Union (EBU), which oversees the competition, the candidacies of Tel Aviv and Jerusalem stand out. According to observers, the first has the best chances to win the bet. Relocation of the next edition is not on the agenda.

According to the Israeli media, the EBU has asked the government of the Jewish state to sign several pledges, including “the free entry and circulation of fans regardless of their political views.”

Calls for boycotts that have materialised

In May, a few days after the Eurovision Song Contest, several voices had been raised in Iceland, Sweden and Ireland in favour of a boycott of the contest if it were held in Jerusalem .

In recent months, several calls for boycotts of various events have led to the cancellation of these events. In June, the friendly match Israel – Argentina , which was to be held in Jerusalem, was not played, in particular because of death threats addressed to the Argentine footballer Lionel Messi. This summer, singer Lana del Rey and the group Of Montreal have given up performing at Meteor, a festival held in the north of the Jewish state.

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