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US band withdraws from Meteor Festival to protest 'Israeli apartheid'

September 5, 2018 at 11:29 am

Of Montreal in Sweden [Wikipedia]

A US indie pop band is the latest to withdraw from Israel’s Meteor Festival, in response to a call for a boycott from Palestinian activists and their allies.

In a statement published on their Facebook page, of Montreal announced that the decision to cancel their appearance at the festival came “after deep consideration”.

“After exhausting all of the different possible ways of justifying playing an Israeli party festival, while the political and military leaders of the country continue their murderous and brutal policies against the Palestinian people, we came to the realization that there is no actual appropriate move other than to cancel the show”, the band’s statement continued.

Now is not the time for escapism and celebrations. Now is the time for activism and protests against Israeli apartheid, Israeli occupation of the West Bank and the human rights atrocities being carried out everyday in Gaza by Israeli forces

of Montreal added.

“We have so much love for the peace loving Israeli people and an equal amount of love for the peace loving Palestinians. This is in no way an indictment of the Israeli people in general. We simply cannot turn a blind eye to this crisis. To ignore the call to stand up in support of an oppressed group of humans is one of the worst things one can do,” the statement concluded.

Of Montreal, founded by frontman Kevin Barnes in 1996, is the latest group to withdraw from the Meteor Festival, with more than a dozen artists similarly cancelling, including Lana del Rey.

The Palestinian-led Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions(BDS) campaign has been urging artists to respect the cultural boycott call, in response to Israel’s ongoing violations of Palestinian rights.

READ: Under BDS pressure, 15 bands pull out of Israeli festival