Lebanese author boycotts cultural festival in Paris, cites Israeli singer and exhibit | JNS

A well-known Lebanese novelist has withdrawn his participation in an Arab culture festival in Paris after discovering that the event will feature an exhibition on Jews and a performance by an Israeli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 post. 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 Arabic language media Al-Quds Al-Arabi, Khoury further explained that he pulled out because an Israeli singer was in one of the participating bands and there would be a featured exhibit called “Jews of the Orient.”

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

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

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Darcy J. Skinner