Lebanese author boycots cultural festival in Paris, quotes Israeli singer and exhibition

A famous Lebanese novelist withdrew his participation in an Arab culture festival in Paris after discovering that the event would feature an exhibition on Jews and a performance by an Israeli artist.

the Arabofolies festival organized by the Institut du Monde Arabe (IMA) in France is held from December 3 to 12.

Elias Khoury announced his withdrawal from the festival last week in a Facebook Publish. He said in Arabic that he made the decision “because of the ambiguity of the festival and the air of normalization that surrounds it,” reported The New Arabic.

Speaking to the Newspaper in Arabic Language Al-Quds Al-ArabiKhoury further explained that he had withdrawn because an Israeli singer was part of one of the participating groups and that there would be an exhibition called “The Jews of the East”.

The IMA has since canceled the colloquium “The Israeli-Arab conflict between literature, cinema and history” which was to feature Khoury as a speaker, according to The new Arabic. The rest of the festival events will proceed as planned.

Khoury’s withdrawal comes after the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel launched a effort to boycott the festival because of its ties to Israeli institutions, including the Israel Museum and the Ben-Zvi Institute. Two Palestinian artists had previously withdrawn their participation in support of the boycott.

Darcy J. Skinner