Mahmoud Abbas and the Eurovision Logo.
(photo credit: MOHAMAD TOROKMAN/REUTERS + COURTESY KAN)
The Palestinian Authority has launched a campaign to stop the Eurovision Song Contest from being held in Jerusalem, although it’s still unclear whether the contest would be held in the city next year.
Ahmed Assaf, the PA minister in charge of the official Palestinian media, said he has sent dozens of letters to Arab and European parties warning them against holding next year’s Eurovision in Jerusalem, which he said was “occupied Palestinian land according to international law and United Nations resolutions.”
He said, that in his letters, he made it clear that holding the Eurovision in “occupied Jerusalem would mean legitmizing the Israeli occupation and practises, including the Judaization of the city and house demolitions.”
The minister also warned that holding the song contest in Jerusalem would “constitute a grave violation of the international law, especially the 4th Geneva Convention, which prohibits altering the status of the city which is under occupation.”
He said that the heads of the Arab States Broadcasting Union (ASBU), an institution related to the League of Arab States and the Pan-Arab Association of Public Service and Commercial Broadcasters, supported the PA campaign to stop the Eurovision from being held in Jerusalem.
According to Assaf, the the ASBU heads sent letters to a number of European institutions urging them to move the Eurovision to a European country so as to avoid “harming the feelings of the Palestinian people and hundreds of millions of Arab Muslims and Christians.”