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Netanyahu GA speech 311.(Photo by: Avi Ohayon)
PM: People of culture shouldn't get involved in boycotts
Netanyahu joins debate on directors boycott of Ariel theater, explains that "cultural center is important, and Ariel is important."
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu gave his opinion on the controversy surrounding the the new cultural center in Ariel on Sunday, telling his cabinet, "Someone that considers himself a person of culture should not need to get involved with boycotts."

"I think that the cultural center is important, and Ariel is important," the prime minister noted, explaining that he was involved at various different stages in the establishment of the center.

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"Unfortunately I was abroad during the opening and therefore I was not able to attend. I heard that there were people who called for the center to be boycotted and attacked Culture and Sport Minister Limor Livnat. Boycotts - we know how they begin but not how they end.

The storm surrounding the cultural center intensified on Saturday as dozens of Israeli cinema and television figures decided to join other artists in protesting Livnat's plan to obligate state-supported arts centers to require their actors to perform anywhere in Israel, including in settlements beyond the Green Line, if they want to continue to receive funding.

In a petition published online, the artists stated: "Together with you we will stand up for our civil rights and moral duty to express our opinion and to act according to our political positions and our conscience, and therefore to try and influence the future of the State of Israel."

The petition was signed by prominent directors Ari Folman, Keren Yedaya, Eran Riklis, Ronit Elkabetz, Eytan Fox, and several others.
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