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A large and energetic protest began around 10 am this morning outside the Central Halls in Tollcross where an Israeli cultural fringe event is being held.

The event, called the Shalom Festival, celebrates Israeli music, food and culture and aims to promote peace and understanding by “building cultural bridges” between Israel and Scotland.

The event has been put on by volunteers and the pro-Israel organisation Stand With Us features various stalls showcasing Israeli products and demonstrations of traditional cooking and martial arts. The event is set to run throughout the day and into the evening, concluding at 10pm.

The protest in response has been staged by various organisations including Scottish Solidarity with Palestine campaign and the Edinburgh Radical Communist group. Activists were seen waving Palestinian flags, which also adorned many streetlights and railings, and chanting slogans such as “Your tickets are covered with Palestinian blood” as well as shouting “Shame on you” at visitors to the event.

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Mick Napier, leader of the SSP group said: “We know our protest will send a message to Palestinians that they are not alone; Israel can kill them, imprison them and torture them but it is Israel that feels international isolation and the Palestinians who have populist support.”

The protestors also made accusations that the Israeli embassy had funded the Shalom Festival.

Nigel Goodrich, lead organiser of the event denied any such funding from the Israeli government. Speaking on the protests outside his event, Goodrich said:

“Politics should have no role in art at all. I’m all for peaceful protest, and I’m glad that so far the protest has been peaceful… We want to have dialogue with anybody and they’re welcome to come along and enjoy the performances.”

 

7 COMMENTS

  1. Today was a reminder to the so called Palestinian Solidarity that Jews are no longer fair game to be demonised and excluded from society in scenes reminiscent of Nazi Germany when shops were boycotted and eventually destroyed .
    SPSC is not about conflict resolution . It is not reflective of the determination of so many to bring about a two state solution . It is first and foremost about delegitimisation and the eventual eradication of Israel as a Jewish homeland . Polemicists such as Napier are not interested in how this is achieved . How much misery and bloodshed is created in the process . The end justifies the means . He and his minions will fail as others have failed before . Professor Norman Finklestein , no Zionist for sure , in an interview with Frank Barat labelled PSC / BDS a cult with no mainstream political support . Napier and his cohorts would do well to remember those words .

  2. Harvey Harvey, the ‘haters’ you attempt to demonise only hate genocide & would have stood with hitlers human shield against the invading bankers. Sacrificing the holocaust victims doesn’t make knesset Abraham, just corrupt. True Israel will form itself when our freemasons are driven out. Insha Allah

  3. I’m deeply ashamed that Scotland’s Jewish community and its friends are subjected to abusive chanting to attend a peaceful and lawful event in our capital city. If a Muslim event celebrating Arab culture was targeted in this way we would rightly be scandalised. Why are we so blasé when it is our Jewish neighbours who have to run the gauntlet of hate to get to an event?

  4. Actually Peter you’ll find most are against not only zionism (destroying Israel as a county more than about freeing Palestine or the concern of its citizens – they’ve painted all of Israel as having “white privilege” and the rest – terrorism as a reaction to these ‘Jews’ that live there.) but “western imperialism” as a whole… not unlike the concept of manifest destiny in the nation states, and pretty much everywhere else. It’s a narrow reconstruction of history that seems bent on rectifying the past by rewriting it in the present to be more inclusive with figures like Yakub at every turn – thought logic just about broke thru when nus’ malia bouattia was claiming to be politically black or the uprising that leaves every muslim terrorist as a lone wolf teenager when any other ‘teenager’ gets the narrative of a young adult and any other ‘terrorist’ is called just that.

    the only reason they go after Israel because they can — they’re too much of cowards to protest to the level of BDS any of the surrounding countries.

  5. I see zionists have big pain in the a**e over this demo. Why none of you came out to talk with us jewish people with Palestinian flags? Many of us are in SPSC..you have to think very hard now and came with some other name to describe us than antisemite.It just won’t work anymore.Now when jewish people massively are joining bds -you cant call opposition,bulling boys,,You know damn well why we have been standing at this other side.That was judaism before zionism and that WILL BE judaism AFTER zionism.Your political ideology dont apply to all jews neither it describe them!I never felt MORE PROUD of my polish jewish heritage than at this moment when with others a like i could go on the streets and scream that i have NOTHING TO DO with all of you or opressing apartheid state of israel and it crimes.Zionism is the main cause of antisemitism those day.We ordinary jews are suffering because people are associating us with zionists,even though most of us think you dont represent us.

  6. The Demontration was noisy. As for Slogans” your tickets are covered with Palestinian blood” is not really aggressive when you consider what Israel has actually done in the way of murdering innocent parents and children, Drs and ambulance staff in Gaza. If some people in Scotland live in a bubble and don’t know these facts, it’s only right to tell them the truth. Please read up UN reports, OXFAM reports, Jon Snow’s report, read Illan Pape’s books and many others Jews and non Jews who oppose killing and stealing by Israel

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