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Madonna to Perform at Eurovision Contest in Tel Aviv Despite Pressure from BDS Movement

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Madonna will headline next month’s Eurovision singing contest in Tel Aviv and will sing two different songs, according to The Jerusalem Post.

By: Harry Cherry

Jewish Voice for Peace launched a lengthy campaign aimed at getting Madonna to cancel her performance, saying “there’s no neutrality in situations of injustice.”

Various public figures in the United Kingdom such as Julie Christie and Ken Loach signed a formal letter urging BBC to lobby for the event to be relocated, citing Israel’s “violation of Palestinian human rights.”

Despite the BDS campaign and various antisemitic politicians both in the United States and abroad, such as Rep. Ilhan Omar, Democrat from Minnesota, and Jeremy Corbin, who leads Britain’s labourparty, the State of Israel is still the only thriving democracy in the Middle East.

Omar Barghouti, who is one of the founders of the BDS movement, previously said that he opposes “a Jewish state in any part of Palestine.”

Mr. Barghouti was banned from entering the United States on Thursday. Airline employees told him that he was unable to fly to the United States, the Arab American Institute said, according to NPR.

“Barghouti was not provided an explanation for his denial of entry beyond ‘immigration matter,” they told NPR in a statement.

“Visa records are confidential under U.S. law; therefore, we cannot discuss the details of individual visa cases,” a spokesperson with the State Department told NPR.

“Omar Barghouti is a leading Palestinian voice on human rights. Omar’s denial of entry into the U.S. is the latest example of the Trump Administration’s disregard for those rights,” James Zogby, the President of the Arab-American Institute, said in a statement.

“Having spent considerable time here as a student and while on speaking tours, Omar visiting America was never an issue before,” he continued. “It is clear this arbitrary political decision is motivated by this administration’s effort to silence Palestinian voices.”

“At a time when some members of Congress are advocating for regressive anti-BDS bills and resolutions, when states have passed legislation targeting the non-violent boycott movement in violation of our protected First Amendment rights, it is disturbing that policy makers and the American people will not have the opportunity to hear from Omar directly about his views,” he added. “The voices of advocates for Palestinian human rights, whether through political targeting or regressive, discriminatory laws, are silenced when discussions or debates are denied.”

Amnesty International said in February that Israel should “end the arbitrary travel ban on human rights defender Omar Barghouti,” according to the Arab-American Institute.

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