Swedish artists announce boycotting Israeli Eurovision Song Contest

Apr 04,2019

‘As long as Israel, with its apartheid policy, denies the Palestinians their basic human rights, we must renounce all participation in Israeli cultural exchanges,’ the artists said.

A total of 171 Swedish artists and celebrities have signed an open letter urging to boycott the Eurovision Song Contest planned to be held in Israeli city of Tel Aviv next month.

"We, Swedish artists and cultural workers who have signed this call, cannot quietly watch Israel use the Eurovision Song Contest to conceal their crimes against the Palestinian people", the appeal published in the Aftonbladet newspaper said.

The list of signatories includes prog rock star Mikael Wiehe, award-winning actress Lo Kauppi, and singer-songwriter Joakim Thåström of the seminal Swedish punk rock band Ebba Grön.

"Just a few days after the Israeli victory in the Eurovision Song Contest in May 2018, Israel's army killed 62 Palestinians who protested against their prison-like imprisonment in Gaza. Six of those murdered were children.

The open letter was also signed by journalist Kajsa Ekis Ekman, who took part in the 2015 Freedom Flotilla to Gaza, Israeli-born Left party member and musician Dror Feiler, who also took part in Freedom Flotilla, and Green Party founder Per Gahrton.

"As long as Israel, with its apartheid policy, denies the Palestinians their basic human rights, we must renounce all participation in Israeli cultural exchanges", the signatories concluded.