[QODLink]
Middle East
UK singer cancels Israel concerts
Elvis Costello cites "intimidation" and "humiliation' of Palestinians.
Last Modified: 19 May 2010 22:12 GMT
Costello said the Israeli-Palestinian conflict was too complex to be addressed in concert [Reuters]

Elvis Costello, the British singer-songwriter, has cancelled two concerts in Israel this summer because of what he called the "grave and complex" sensitivities of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

He said the concerts, due to be held in the Caesarea amphitheatre north of Tel Aviv on June 30 and July 1, could be "interpreted as a political
act that resonates more than anything that might be sung".

Costello said on Tuesday that the events would have been attended by many people who question Israeli policies "on settlement and deplore conditions that visit intimidation, humiliation or much worse on Palestinian civilians in the name of national security".

He said that, in the end, his conscience and instinct told him that if these themes were "too grave and complex" to be addressed in concert, "then it is also quite impossible to look the other way".

Costello said he was equally aware of the sensitivities behind those themes and "of so many despicable acts of violence perpetrated in the name of liberation".

He apologised to fans and also many in the Israeli media who he said had helped him to gain an understanding of the cultural scene there.

Costello said he regretted the fact that he probably would not receive another invitation to play in Israel, but imagined "a better time" when he would not be writing such a statement.

He joins other performers including Gil Scott-Heron and Santana, who have dropped tours in Israel in recent months.

Source:
Agencies
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Featured on Al Jazeera
As Western stars re-release 1980s charity hit, many Africans say it's a demeaning relic that can do more harm than good.
At least 25 tax collectors have been killed since 2012 in Mogadishu, a city awash in weapons and abject poverty.
Tokyo government claims its homeless population has hit a record low, but analysts - and the homeless - beg to differ.
3D printers can cheaply construct homes and could soon be deployed to help victims of catastrophe rebuild their lives.
Featured
Pro-Russia leaders' election in Ukraine's east shows bloody conflict is far from a peaceful resolution.
Critics challenge Canberra's move to refuse visas for West Africans in Ebola-besieged countries.
A key issue for Hispanics is the estimated 11.3 million immigrants in the US without papers who face deportation.
In 1970, only two mosques existed in the country, but now more than 200 offer sanctuary to Japan's Muslims.
Hundreds of the country's reporters eke out a living by finding news - then burying it for a price.