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Venice Biennale: Rome condemns call to exclude Israel

2024-02-27T18:53:48.953Z

Highlights: Venice Biennale: Rome condemns call to exclude Israel. Italy's culture minister on Tuesday condemned an open letter signed by thousands of artists, architects and curators. The collective behind the letter, the "Art Non Genocide Alliance" (ANGA), cites the decision taken two years ago to ban anyone linked to the Russian government in protest against the invasion of Ukraine. “Any official representation of Israel on the international cultural scene is an endorsement of its policies and the genocide in Gaza,” the letter added.


Italy's culture minister has condemned an open letter calling for Israel to be excluded from the 2024 Venice Biennale.


After Eurovision and the Berlinale, it is the turn of the Venice Biennale to be at the heart of a controversy linked to Israel.

Italy's culture minister on Tuesday condemned an open letter signed by thousands of artists, architects and curators calling on the Venice Art Biennale to exclude Israel from the 2024 edition.

The collective behind the letter, the "Art Non Genocide Alliance" (ANGA), cites the decision taken two years ago by the Biennale - one of Italy's main cultural institutions - to ban anyone linked to the Russian government in protest against the invasion of Ukraine.

“The Biennale has remained silent on the atrocities committed by Israel against the Palestinians.

We are dismayed by this double standard,” says the letter, signed by more than 12,500 people, according to ANGA.

“Any official representation of Israel on the international cultural scene is an endorsement of its policies and the genocide in Gaza,” the letter added.

“Israel has the right to express its art”

The Italian Minister of Culture, Gennaro Sangiuliano, condemned in a press release this “unacceptable” and “shameful” letter which “threatens freedom of thought and creation”.

“Israel not only has the right to express its art, but it has the duty to bear witness to its own people at a time when they were hit hard by surprise by merciless terrorists,” the minister continued.

Also read Eurovision 2024: why the case of Israel is debated between the participating countries

The Biennale, which will take place from April 20 to November 24, “will always be a space of freedom, meetings, and dialogue and not a space of censorship and intolerance,” says Gennaro Sangiuliano.

The war between Israel and Hamas broke out on October 7 when commandos from the Palestinian Islamist movement launched an unprecedented attack on the south of the Jewish state, resulting in the deaths of at least 1,160 people, mostly civilians. according to an AFP count based on official Israeli data.

During the attack, some 250 people were kidnapped and taken to Gaza.

According to Israel, 130 hostages are still being held there, 31 of whom are believed to have died.

The Israeli military response in the Gaza Strip has left nearly 30,000 dead, according to the Hamas Ministry of Health.

Source: leparis

All news articles on 2024-02-27

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