Gaza artists call on Eurovision singers to boycott Israel

FILE - In this May 12, 2018 file photo, Netta Barzilai from Israel celebrates after winning the Eurovision song contest in Lisbon, Portugal. Palestinian artists are calling on Eurovision song contest contestants to boycott the international music competition that Israel is hosting next week. On Wednesday, May 8, 20119, The Gaza Strip-based Palestinian Artists Association cited the killing of over 60 Palestinians during Gaza border protests on May 14 last year, the same day Israel won the Eurovision. (AP Photo/Armando Franca, File)

Palestinian artists are calling on Eurovision song contest contestants to boycott the international music competition that Israel is hosting next week

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip — Palestinian artists are calling on Eurovision song contest contestants to boycott the international music competition that Israel is hosting next week.

The Gaza Strip-based Palestinian Artists Association said Wednesday that Israel is using the event to "perpetuate oppression, promote injustice or whitewash a brutal apartheid regime."

The artists cited the killing of over 60 Palestinians during Gaza border protests on May 14 last year, the same day Israel won the Eurovision.

The association held a sit-in outside the EU's Gaza office and wrote a letter of protest.

Palestinian militants fired hundreds of rockets at Israel over the weekend. Israel retaliated with airstrikes. At least 25 Palestinians, including 10 militants and four Israeli civilians, were killed. The renewed violence threatened to disrupt the Eurovision festivities slated to begin May 14.

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