Germany’s ARD network have scrapped plans to broadcast two of Roger Waters upcoming shows in Berlin and Cologne.
The Guardian report that five state TV and radio affiliates of the network have made the decision not to air next summer’s shows “in reaction to antisemitism accusations against him” which stem from the former Pink Floyd man’s involvement with the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement.
Waters has long spoken out against artists who play in Israel, with the BDS calling for a cultural boycott of the country and was set up to “end Israel’s occupation, racial discrimination and denial of basic Palestinian rights.”
RBB, part of the ARD network, reports that it wanted to send a message to other artists who refuse to perform in Israel due to the BDS.
President of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, Josef Schuster says: “The quick and decisive reaction by the broadcasters is an important signal that rampant antisemitism against Israel has no place in Germany.”
Waters’ tour director Marek Lieberberg – the son of Holocaust survivors – acknowledges there is “clearly visible and growing antisemitism” in Germany, but calls the decision “absolutely ridiculous.” He also reports that while he personally doesn’t support the BDS, “I cannot and do not want to deny Waters his right to freedom of opinion.”
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