Gillian Brien, People Before Profit candidate Dublin in the Euro elections, has renewed a call for RTE to refuse to broadcast the Eurovision contest from Israel.

In a statement she said,

‘If anyone wanted to see how racist the state of Israel has become, they need only look at the recent election. It was a battle between a prime minister who promised to annex part (or possibly all) of the West Bank and its several million Palestinians into Israel, but without giving them equal rights to Jews, and a former army general and chief of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) who boasted about how he had killed, or had his army kill, 1,364 Palestinians in past invasions into Gaza.

‘The Israeli television service KAN has reserved 500 seats at Eurovision rehearsals for military reservists. How can this not be a political event?

‘It is time to break the cosy consensus that sees Israel as a beacon of liberalism in the Middle East.

‘It has murdered some 200 Palestinians since the Great March for Return began in 2018. It has subjected children to illegal military detentions. It has a political leadership that openly talks of removing Arabs who make up 20% of the Israeli population.

‘A first symbolic step would be a boycott of the Eurovision. A more substantial move would be to remove Israel from the Euro-Mediterranean agreement which gives them privileged access to EU markets.

‘Doing nothing, however, amounts to complicity in racism.’