- Published on Thursday, 02 August 2012 09:13
The Palestinian Circus School sent a letter to the General Management of Cirque du Soleil on July 13, 2012 calling the Cirque du Soleil, or any circus for that matter, to not perform in Israel.
The Palestinian Circus School stressed that as for circus to be faithful to its art form, they are also unrelentingly committed to human rights.
The school requested that Cirque du Soleil reconsider its planned performance in Israel; a military occupying power and violator of international law and human rights, and join other artists from around the world who have called on you to support human rights and the right of all people to be free from military occupation.
The Palestinian circus school told Cirque du Soleil that they had a dream of spreading circus arts in Palestine and establishing a community circus school for Palestinian children and youth living within the Israeli occupied Palestinian territories.
Stressing, these Palestinians (children, youth) are oppressed by a prolonged military occupation and deprived of their most basic rights, and the fact that the majority of this category is still recovering from Israel's onslaught on the Gaza Strip, known as Operation Cast Lead in the winter of 2008-2009, which left 1385 Palestinian dead, of which 318 were minors, and another 5,300 wounded.
According to the letter, the Palestinian circus school also said that Cirque du Soleil's visit to Israel will be fully facilitated by the Israeli authorities, yet the movement of the students and artists of the Palestinian Circus School is permanently crippled by military law that denies their entry to Jerusalem, Jaffa, Akka, Haifa or Nazareth, not to mention the completely closed Gaza Strip.
Palestinian Circus school concluded that Israel is not only limits the freedom of movement, they also deport international circus artists who come to perform in Palestine, taking the famous Spanish clown Ivan Prado, as a prime example that received international attention.
Mr. Prado was denied entry by Israel in 2010 (More here). He was accused of having ties with Palestinian terror groups while his only "crime" was to prepare a large clown festival in Palestine! Bringing laughter to Palestinians children seems to threaten Israeli security. All this is simply a focus on us Palestinians living under occupation, and we have not yet mentioned the violations of international law against Palestinian refugees around the world who are prevented from returning to their homes, or the apartheid conditions that Palestinian citizens in Israel live under.
The Palestinian Circus school calls Cirque du Soleil to stand in solidarity with the Palestinian struggle for freedom, equality and justice and to cancel their performance in Israel, the same as these famous artists; Bono, Carlos Santana, Elvis Costello, the Pixies and the Klaxons and Gorillaz Sound System, among others, all who refused to come and perform in Israel until it abides by International Law and ends the illegal occupation of Palestine.