Censorship’s newest victim: Take action now!

multaqa mifgash

Dear friends,

 

The latest victim at the front of ACRI’s fight to protect freedom of expression in Israel is the Multaqa-Mifgash Center in the Negev. Multaqa and Mifgash mean ‘meeting’ in Arabic and Hebrew respectively, reflecting the Center’s goal of bringing together local Bedouins and Jews to promote dialogue, tolerance, and peace. But their work towards that remarkable vision has motivated opponents of freedom of expression to shut it down. 

 

In the name of freedom of expression – in the arts, in education, in the media, and civil society- we need your urgent help to raise another $8,000 to fight censorship so that places like this can keep their doors open. Our Israeli supporters have already raised 25,000 NIS to protect this fundamental right – will you join them today?

 

Why is Multaqa-Mifgash in danger of being shut down? The Beer Sheva Municipality claims that bringing Jews and Bedouins together for an activist training run by ACRI qualifies as ‘political’ and therefore disqualifies the Center from using munipal spaces. We say participating in the queer Middle Eastern Film Festival, gathering a mixed audience, functioning as a hub for art and dialogue are critical assertions of our fundamental right to freedom of expression and uncensored debate.

 

Haia Noach, CEO of the Negev Coexistence Forum, the organization that directs Multaqa-Mifgash, declared recently that they will not retreat in the face of intimidation: “We, Arabs and Jews, answer by continuing to hold shared encounters and gatherings, calling for a just, shared existence for all residents of the Negev.” 

 

Multaqa-Mifgash’s struggle symbolizes that our values are at stake. While the current government has adopted the strategy of drowning out dissent, ACRI has chosen to speak out and fight back. We resist the shutting down of debate by inviting our community – you, our supporters – to stand up for democracy and freedom of expression.

 

Join our fight to resist censorship and protect freedom of expression in cultural institutions

 

With you on our side, we will continue to fight for this fundamental right in Israel, and we will win. 

 

Yours,
Sharon

Adv. Sharon Abraham-Weiss
Executive Director
The Association for Civil Rights in Israel

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Categories: Democracy and Civil Liberties, Freedom of Expression

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