The popular South African DJ Black Coffee’s performance in Tel Aviv has been slammed for being in violation of a cultural boycott called for by South Africa’s ruling African National Congress, for the “Apartheid-style, gross human rights violations” against the Palestinian people.
Black Coffee is embroiled in a Twitter storm following his recent sold-out performance in Israel
The DJ’s appearance at The Rocks Garden in Tel Aviv on March 31 coincided with the Great March of Return in Gaza, which started a day earlier.
The annual march along the border with Israel commemorates the expulsion of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians from their homes in 1948.
It culminates in the observance of Nakba Day (Catastrophe Day) on April 15 – a day after Israel’s declaration of independence.
This year, more than 15 Palestinians were killed and hundreds injured as Israeli forces confronted marchers along their border – sparking global outrage over the violence.
The ANC has since called for artists to join its cultural boycott of Israel.
The Middle Eastern country has faced political, cultural and economic boycotts in opposition to their actions over the course of their conflict with Palestine and a number of Arab countries. Artists like Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Oumou Sangaré, Roger Waters, Brian Eno, and Carlos Santana have previously cancelled performances in Israel in support of a cultural boycott.
“South Africa’s isolation and the Academic & Cultural boycott are part of the reasons Apartheid capitulated to the call for freedom. It is morally & politically insensitive for DJ Black Coffee to just go on partying in Apartheid Israel, whilst it kills & oppresses innocent people,” called out Floyd Shivambu.
“In solidarity with the people of Palestine, we will continue highlighting shortcomings wherever they rear their head with regard to the role of South Africans in undermining the cause of the emancipation of the people of Palestine,” said Lindiwe Zulu, chairperson of the ANC’s international relations committee.
Meanwhile, Black Coffee commented on his Twitter account.
“Like everyone else I have rights and free will, and no, Black Coffee is not a political party…I work as an entertainer to feed my family. To sum it up – I’ll take a bullet for my family.”