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June 14, 2018 2:38 pm

German Festival Cancels Scottish Band’s Concert Due to Its BDS Support

avatar by Shiryn Ghermezian

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Young Brothers in concert. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

A German arts and music festival announced on Wednesday it was cancelling a concert by the Scottish band Young Fathers due to the group’s support for the anti-Israel boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) movement.

The festival, Ruhrtriennale, posted a press release on its website stating that the show scheduled for August 18 was nixed after Young Fathers refused to “distance” itself from the BDS movement, despite being asked to do so by the festival.

Ruhrtriennale’s Artistic Director Stefanie Carp, said, “We explicitly do not conclude from this that the band is antisemitic, and, in this context, I consider it important to emphasize that criticism of the policy of the current Israeli government is not per se equivalent to antisemitism.”

“However, the Ruhrtriennale distances itself in all forms from the BDS movement and wishes to have absolutely no connection with the campaign,” Carp added. “We have therefore decided to cancel the concert. We regret this immensely, because the Young Fathers would have set an important tone in the program of the Ruhrtriennale.”

In a statement to Artists for Palestine UK, Young Fathers confirmed the cancellation, and accused the Israeli government of “grave violations of the human rights of the Palestinian people.” The band also called the BDS movement “non-violent and anti-racist.”

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