Controversy erupts in Morocco over Israeli singer’s role at Tangier festival
Rabat – Participation of an Israeli singer at a jazz festival in the city of Tangier has led to controversy among locals who feared her presence might be viewed as normalization of ties with Israel.
The festival, which is set to be launched this week, sparked angry reactions among a large number of Moroccans who called for the cancellation of Noam Vazana’s performance at musical festival.
The festival’s management, known as “TanJazz”, have clarified that Vazana will participate in a joint concert with an Arab singer named Tema next Friday, within the framework of an Arab-Palestinian rapprochement program.
A number of Moroccans have denounced the scheduled concert, including human rights activist Sion Assidon, who expressed his views in a blog post saying: “Noam Vazana, who is scheduled to participate in the Jazz festival, flaunts her military service in the Israeli Air Force and said earlier that she was using music to promote a positive image of Israel”.
“How can we schedule a concert for this singer in Tangier, which is a city of multiculturalism and co-existence, while she represents a culture of racism against the Palestinians,” Assidon said, adding that she was “a reserve soldier in the air force who wanted to serve her country after the Israeli military committed war crimes against humanity in Palestinian territory of Gaza and in Qana in Lebanon and elsewhere?”.
Activist Iman Benaala called on all civil, student and political bodies in the city of Tangier to act together in order to cancel this show and stop what it described as cultural normalization with the Zionist entity.