“Two peace activists have been arrested and charged by Police for simply expressing their view that the film Ben Gurion is Israeli propaganda to white wash Israel’s crimes in Palestine,” said Auckland Peace Action member Valerie Morse.
“Last night, the film screened at the Q Theatre, and activist staged a small protest inside as the film began.”
“While the activists certainly did expect that they would be thrown out of the theatre, the decision by police to arrest and prosecute two people is totally out of line. It is an attempt to silence critics of Israel and repress freedom of speech. Charging people with committing a crime for staging a small non-violent peace protest sends the message that dissent won’t be tolerated.”
“This film is subject to the international cultural boycott of Israel, which is a non-violent global campaign to force change from the Israeli state. The screening in Auckland comes just days after Israeli forces opened fire on Palestinians who are protesting for their human rights, murdering over a hundred people, and injuring thousands.”
“Just as New Zealanders stood up against racist South Africa during the years of apartheid, we are standing up today against racist Israel and the system of apartheid there. We will not be silenced by these arrests, and will return on Sunday for another action at the second screening of the film.”