Pro-Palestinian organization, petition call on Alicia Keys to cancel Israel concert

The U.S. Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation is calling on Alicia Keys to “boycott apartheid” by not performing in Israel on July 4th.

The organization says it works “change U.S. policy toward Palestine/Israel to support human rights, international law, and equality.”

They are urging the Grammy Award winning artist via social media and an online petition to reconsider her upcoming concert in Israel, because of what they call the “apartheid” and Jim-Crow-like discrimination that Palestinians face.

theGrio: Palestinian women urge Alicia Keys not to perform in Israel

Keys has responded to the criticism, telling the New York Times: “I look forward to my first visit to Israel. Music is a universal language that is meant to unify audiences in peace and love, and that is the spirit of our show.”

The U.S. Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation dismissed Keys’ statement saying, “due to Israeli oppression and restrictions, the vast majority of Palestinians will be unable to join her in Tel Aviv as part of her efforts to unify audiences.”

Celebrated author Alice Walker recently wrote an open letter to Keys, comparing Israel’s treatment of Palestinians to Jim Crow-era segregation in the United States.

Walker has come under fire for her analogy to Jim Crow segregation, but numerous African-Americans signed a letter affirming her position. Among the signatories are elected officials, college professors, authors and activists.

So far the petition, which appears on Change.org, has received over 15,600 signatures. It argues that the “boycott is ‘inspired by the struggle of South Africans against apartheid and in the spirit of international solidarity, moral consistency and resistance to injustice and oppression.'”

TheGrio reached out to the U.S. Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation and are awaiting a response.

Follow Carrie Healey on Twitter @CarrieHeals

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