Netta Barzilai, Eurovision winner 2018..
(photo credit: REUTERS)
The Palestinian Journalists Syndicate on Wednesday called to boycott the 2019 Eurovision Contest, which is scheduled to take place in Tel Aviv.
In a letter to the European Broadcasting Union, the Ramallah-based syndicate, which is dominated by Fatah loyalists, claimed that the Eurovision “may be held in Jerusalem or any part of occupied Palestine, and this is harmful to the rights of the Palestinian people, especially their right to self-determination.”
Copies of the letter were also sent to the International Federation of Journalists and the European Union for Journalists.
It was possible that the Eurovision would be staged in Jerusalem, with ministers calling for such a move. However, Tel Aviv was eventually selected after months of speculation
It was not clear why the Palestinian Journalists Syndicate chose to call for boycotting the song contest despite the decision to hold it in Tel Aviv.
The syndicate urged members of the European Broadcasting Union not to broadcast the contest, saying that it “may be held in Jerusalem or on any occupied land,” and said that covering such events “encourages the occupation to step up violence and assaults against journalists and freedom of expression.”
The group’s letter came days after it accused IDF soldiers of using force to disperse a march of journalists near the Qalandiya checkpoint, south of Ramallah. The protest was organized by the Palestinian syndicate to express solidarity with Palestinian journalists and their right to move freely through Israeli checkpoints.
Several international journalists took part in the protest. They had arrived in Ramallah to attend last week’s international media conference, which was held under the banner “Journalists Under Fire.
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