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"The resonances are huge": Carrie Crowley on why she's supporting a boycott of the Eurovision in Israel next year

She was speaking as part of a group of Irish artists and public figures like Eurovision commentator Mike Murphy, music legend Christy Moore and Senator David Norris who launched the boycott campaign today in Dublin. / YouTube

“THE RESONANCES ARE huge,” says Carrie Crowley about the similarities between Ireland and Palestine.”But at least we came to some level of understanding with each other. I love to think something like that could happen for the people of Palestine.”

The Irish actress and former 1997 Eurovision presenter was speaking at a gathering of campaigners at the Ha’penny Bridge today, who are calling for a boycott of the Eurovision in Israel next year.

Over 3,300 people, mostly Irish artists and media personalities, have signed their petition to support the boycott, including Eurovision commentator Mike Murphy, former Eurovision winner Charlie McGettigan, music legends Christy Moore and Frances Black and Senator David Norris.

They believe that Israel’s hosting of the Eurovision will be used to “culturally whitewash and ‘pinkwash’ Israel’s atrocious record of seven decades of war crimes and human rights abuses against the Palestinian people.”

The popular song contest is due to be held in Israel in 2019 after the country’s entry, Toy by Netta, won the competition with a total of 529 points.

It comes following protests along the Gaza border against the US embassy opening in Jerusalem that saw 60 Palestinians killed last month by Israeli troops.

Earlier in the month Sinn Féin’s Pearse Doherty  called on RTÉ  and the Irish government to boycott the European song contest due to “Israel’s ongoing and grievous violations of international law and international humanitarian law” and the “apartheid policies being applied to the Palestinian people.”

In response to today’s call for a boycott the Embassy of Israel in Dublin said they were “saddened” at the news.

The Eurovision is a cultural event and should not become politicized by extreme voices seeking to boycott Israel. Israel has a long and proud history of participation in the Eurovision.  Over the years, the Israeli contestants have showcased the diversity and openness of Israeli society.  Indeed, in 1998 the Israeli winner – Dana International – brought the issue of trans identity into the mainstream.

They added: “We are sure that a small minority of individuals, who are seeking yet another vehicle to demonise Israel, will not disrupt what is sure to be a magnificent event.”

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