“Irish Artists’ Pledge to Boycott Israel” reaches 200 signatories
Irish singer-songwriter Dylan Walshe became the landmark 200th signatory to the “Irish Artists’ Pledge to Boycott Israel”, which commits endorsers to not “avail of any invitation to perform or exhibit in Israel, nor to accept any funding from any institution linked to the government of Israel, until such time as Israel complies with international law and universal principles of human rights”.
The pledge - an initiative of the Ireland-Palestine Solidarity Campaign (IPSC) - was launched last August and since then has garnered the support of many high profile Irish creative and performing artists such as Stephen Rea, Sinéad Cusack, Christy Moore, Donal Lunny, Andy Irvine, Damien Dempsey, Neilí Conroy, Conor Kostick, Liam Ó Maonlaí, Sharon Shannon, Robert Ballagh and Nuala Ní Dhomhnaill. The full list of signatories can be viewed online at http://www.ipsc.ie/pledge
Commenting on the landmark 200th signature, the IPSC Cultural Boycott Officer Raymond Deane said: “As the Israeli state becomes ever more racist, expansionist and oppressive we have seen the growth in its isolation by international civil society through the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement. The success of this boycott pledge is indicative of wider feelings toward Israel, both in Ireland and around the world. Indeed, similar pledges and initiatives are being organised in many other countries.”
Freda Hughes, IPSC National Chairperson said: “The IPSC and the international BDS movement salute all those cultural figures who have pledged to boycott Israel until it abides by international law. Unfortunately, for Palestinians and Israelis seeking a genuine and just peace, this day seems as far off as ever. The Israeli military has already killed 6 Palestinians so far this year, there is an anti-democratic crackdown on dissent within Israel itself, and a “new war” on Gaza is being openly talked about.”
Ms Hughes concluded: “Instead of reflecting on the message behind the BDS campaign, Israel and its supporters have ignored calls for justice and instead launched an offensive against anti-occupation and pro-human rights groups in Israel, Palestine and internationally. Ridiculous attempts to smear human rights supporters as “extremist”, “anti-Semitic” and even “terrorist” are being carried out in order to stifle criticism of Israel’s apartheid policies. Of course such claims are nonsensical, but do serve to indicate the pressure the Israeli state is facing from the BDS and social justice movements. It is clear to anyone with eyes to see that it is Israel’s actions that continue to delegitimise it in the eyes of the world.”