Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Amir Benayoun banned from Rivlin event

With thanks: Michelle, Sylvia, and My Right Word blog


One of Amir Benayoun's previous hits 

 A prestige event at the Israeli President's Jerusalem residence to mark  the first national day to commemorate Jewish refugees from Arab countries and Iran  threatened to degenerate into chaos today when President Rivlin banned one of the performers.

The office of the President of Israel  announced that following the release of his song this week, it would not be possible for Israeli singer Amir Benayoun to perform as planned this coming Sunday 30 November.

 Benayoun, who is of Algerian origin,  has just  released a controversial song called 'Ahmed'  whose lyrics could be considered disparaging of Arabs generally. Some have even called his words inciteful.

In a letter to the event organizers, the President's office said that in spite of   Amir Benayoun's talents, his statements are '  inconsistent with the responsibility required of the President's Residence, and of all institutions with influence over the public discourse, to work to alleviate tensions, and promote cooperation rather than division in Israeli society."

Adding fuel to the fire, however, the event organiser, Minister for Senior Citizens Uri Orbach, said that he would cancel his own appearance at the upcoming event out of deference for Benayoun's rights.

"The cancellation of singer Amir Benayoun's concert at the President's house, marking the expulsion of Jews from Arab Lands and Iran, contradicts our position," Orbach stated. Orbach added that while he respects Rivlin, he views the cancellation as an infringement on freedom of expression.

Some 48 progammes  have been arranged across the world to mark the first Day to remember Jewish refugees from Arab lands.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Continuing to prove how wrong his detractors were about him, Rivlin did the right thing.