By Ahmet Gurhan Kartal
LONDON (AA) – A boycott movement against the Eurovision song contest held in Israel has been a massive success as it has amplified awareness about the Palestinians’ plight, according to the Palestine Solidarity Campaign.
Hoda Amari from the campaign told Anadolu Agency that the Eurovision contest has been a "complete failure" for Israel.
Palestinian, Israeli and international artists have united to hold a series of concerts as an alternative to the Eurovision Song Contest held in the Israeli capital Tel Aviv from May 14-18.
Pop star Madonna's guest performance at the annual international song competition has drawn condemnation especially by the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement which has been pushing artists to shun Israel for its occupation of Palestine.
Speaking at an alternative event to the song contest, Not The Eurovision Party For Palestine in north London, Amari said Israel expected around 50,000 tourists during the contest week but this number only reached 4,000 to 5,000.
Amari said with this event they aimed to protest the contest “which Israel is using to mask its crimes against the Palestinian people".
The London event saw the participation of hundreds of people at a venue near Camden Town and it featured some well-known hip hop artists including Lowkey and Mic Righteous.
Palestinian folk dances were watched with interest by the crowd.
Similar alternative parties were held in the occupied West Bank, Haifa and Dublin, which were all streamed live.
“I am proud to perform in this event,” said Lowkey, the head artist of the protest event in London.
“To point out the relationship between the normalization of Israel and international events such as the Eurovision song contest [is the number one aim of the event]," he said.
“It is not a difference between Jews and Muslims but it is a difference between those who believe in the equality of all and those who believe in the supremacy of some,” he added.
The alternative party continued into the early hours of Sunday.