Palestinians urge Roger Waters to boycott Israel

Roger Waters, a founder member of the rock group Pink Floyd, is under pressure to cancel a planned concert in Tel Aviv in June as a protest against Israeli policy towards the Palestinians.

A group of Palestinian political activists, cultural organisations and their supporters have backed a letter to Mr Waters, who has expressed strong opposition to the 450-mile separation barrier being built by Israel. They urge him to remove the city from his summer tour this year.

The letter, which is supported, among others, by the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel, urges Waters not to perform in Israel "until the time comes when it ends its illegal occupation of Palestinian territory".

Waters showed no sign last night that he would bow to the pressure . He said: "I am happy to play to anybody who believes in peace. I don't discriminate between any of my fans, wherever they live. Being an Israeli does not disbar from being a human being."

The campaign to prevent Waters appearing in Israel follows several high-profile cultural skirmishes involving British public figures that began with last year's short-lived academic boycott and the recent announcement by a group of British architects that they were considering calling for a boycott of Israel.

The latter initiative has run into trouble after the leading British architect Richard Rogers, in whose offices the group's inaugural meeting took place, denied he had supported a boycott. There have been calls by American politicians for him to be dropped from a $1.7m (£1m) project to renovate a New York convention centre named after the late Jacob Javits, a Republican senator and strong supporter of Israel.

A number of British musicians have performed in Israel in recent years including, most recently, Phil Collins who held a concert in Tel Aviv last November without much controversy.

Omar Barghouti, of the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel, said yesterday: "We are appealing to Roger Waters because we feel that a principled and conscientious artist like him, who is on record opposing Israel's illegal wall, would be more accommodating to our perspective, to our moral argument." Mr Barghouti, a choreographer, said that supporters of the call would not be satisfied if Waters agreed to perform in a Palestinian location. He said: "We do not wish to become a fig leaf for anyone who does not mind becoming complicit in Israel's crimes ... Performing in Israel as if it were normal, as if it were not building a monstrous colonial wall ... is simply unacceptable."

Waters has long associated his name with various causes. His father, though a pacifist, was killed in the Anzio landings during the Second World War. After the International Court of Justice ruled against Israel's separation barrier in 2004 Waters endorsed a War on Want campaign against the wall, declaring that the poverty inflicted by [it] had been "devastating for Palestinians".

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Business Development Manager / Sales - OTE £45,000

£35000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company is a solutions / s...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Executive - OTE £45,000

£18000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Sales Executive is required t...

Recruitment Genius: Test Development Engineer

£35000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you inspired to bring new a...

Recruitment Genius: Trainee Motor Engineer

£14000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

Day In a Page

Sepp Blatter resignation: The beginning of Fifa's long road to reform?

Does Blatter's departure mean Fifa will automatically clean up its act?

Don't bet on it, says Tom Peck
Charles Kennedy: The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

Charles Kennedy was consistently a man of the centre-left, dedicated to social justice, but was also a champion of liberty and an opponent of the nanny-state, says Baroness Williams
Syria civil war: The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of this endless conflict

The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of Syria's endless civil war

Sahar Qanbar lost her mother and brother as civilians and government soldiers fought side by side after being surrounded by brutal Islamist fighters. Robert Fisk visited her
The future of songwriting: How streaming is changing everything we know about making music

The future of songwriting

How streaming is changing everything we know about making music
William Shemin and Henry Johnson: Jewish and black soldiers receive World War I Medal of Honor amid claims of discrimination

Recognition at long last

Jewish and black soldiers who fought in WWI finally receive medals after claims of discrimination
Beating obesity: The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters

Beating obesity

The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters
9 best women's festival waterproofs

Ready for rain: 9 best women's festival waterproofs

These are the macs to keep your denim dry and your hair frizz-free(ish)
Cycling World Hour Record: Nervous Sir Bradley Wiggins ready for pain as he prepares to go distance

Wiggins worried

Nervous Sir Bradley ready for pain as he prepares to attempt cycling's World Hour Record
Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

On your feet!

Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

The big NHS question

Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

Thongs ain't what they used to be

Big knickers are back
Thurston Moore interview

Thurston Moore interview

On living in London, Sonic Youth and musical memoirs
In full bloom

In full bloom

Floral print womenswear
From leading man to Elephant Man, Bradley Cooper is terrific

From leading man to Elephant Man

Bradley Cooper is terrific