Sikkuy Condemns Lack of Arab Inclusion in Annual Akko Festival

2 September 2015

The Fringe Theater Festival has long been a popular attraction and symbol of shared society for both Jews and Arabs in the mixed coastal city of Akko. Its four-day lineup, held during the Sukkot holiday in the fall, features a competition of original plays, street theater, workshops, concerts, and open-air performances by both local and international theater companies.

But this year, when the schedule was released, NIF-grantee Sikkuy was surprised to discover that not a single performance in Arabic had been scheduled. Furthermore, the festival organizers had decided to only advertise the event in Hebrew.

“In this of all times there is a need to cope with hate and incitement. Especially here in the Galil, which is shared between Jews and Arabs, it’s disappointing to discover that Arabic culture and the culture of Arab citizens is excluded from this activity,” Sikkuy wrote.

“If they are really interested in the establishment of a Jewish-Arab cultural space, they have to invest an active effort in the advancement and encouragement of Arab artists and Arab art in the festival. This is the way to prove the sincerity of their intentions to create a shared festival.”

Sikkuy is an organization of Jewish and Arab citizens working for full equality between Palestinian and Jewish citizens of Israel.

Photo via Wikimedia Commons