The Belgian festival, Balkan Traffic, has canceled Sunday, April 9, 2023, its partnership with the Israeli occupation, following strong efforts by the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement (BDS).
The Belgian-Palestinian Association “ABP” said in a statement that the festival chose to cancel the partnership with the Israeli occupation, after several discussions with its organizers.
It added that the cultural boycott does not target personalities or individuals unless their travel is funded by Israeli institutions.
“For twenty years, the Balkan Traffic festival, the 2023 edition of which will be held from 27 to 30 April in Brussels and Namur, has been committed to presenting Balkan cultures, their flavors, rhythms, and sounds, and this could have spoiled this year because of having a guest that doesn’t quite align with the values conveyed by this festival,” said ABP in its statement.
The association added, “The Israeli government considers sponsoring cultural events an integral part of its policy to whitewash its criminal file against the Palestinian people, so it must be denounced by anyone who believes that human rights do not stop where culture and entertainment begin.”
It also said, “The festival plans to communicate quickly about ending this partnership and its desire to organize a joint debate with it on the sidelines of the festival.”
ABP concluded that she will support the festival in the face of the attacks that this brave decision will not fail to bring to it by the Israeli government, especially on social media, and it encourages those in solidarity with the Palestinian cause to do the same.