Caroline Frost Headshot

Gaza Offensive: Israeli Filmmakers Sign Petition, Urging Israeli Government To Hold Ceasefire On Attacks On Gaza Strip

Posted: Updated:
Print

A group of Israeli filmmakers have added their voices to those pleading for a ceasefire to the attacks by their Government on the Gaza Strip.

At the Jerusalem Film Festival, this group broke into the schedule with an impromptu press conference to declare their concerns for citizens, including children, on both sides of the divide, as this chapter of conflict reaches its seventh day.

israel gaza offensive

Filmmakers in Jerusalem today have expressed their deep concern for victims of the conflict

"We call the Israeli government to cease fire; we urge it not to send our troops to be killed again, in another pointless, cruel military campaign," said the group, consisting of filmmakers Efrat Corem, Shira Geffen, Ronit Elkabetz, Keren Yedaya, Tali Shalom Ezer, Nadav Lapid. Shlomi Elkabetz and Bozi Gete.

"We are scared too," they said. "Some of us are parents. Our children are terrified of the code red sirens and of the thundering sounds of warfare. We do not seek revenge and do not believe in a military solution; this has proven futile in the past.

"Children in Gaza do not enjoy the protection of the Iron Dome systems. They have no residential secured spaces, and no sirens.

"Children living in Gaza today are our partners in peace tomorrow."

READ their statement in full below.

This statement follows the decision earlier today to cancel a Neil Young concert in Tel Aviv, because Israeli police said they could not guarantee the safety of Mr Young or his fans.

International observers continue to express their concern as the tension escalates between Israeli and Palestinian authorities. In Jerusalem, where the 31st Film Festival is currently taking place, sirens have been regularly going off in the city, the signal for everyone to take shelter from rockets fired by Palestinians.

Israel claims that 1,000 rockets have been fired in the last week, and that it destroyed a drone near Ashdod - a town on the coast halfway between Gaza and Tel Aviv - on Monday morning.

The Israelis have in place an Iron Dome defence system, which detects the whereabouts of the rockets and sends up missiles to deflect or destroy them. So far, no Israelis have been killed in this most recent bout of fighting. Palestinians have put the most recent toll of their people killed at 172 fatalities.

Here is the filmmakers' statement in full...

"We, the undersigned, Israeli directors whose films participate in the Jerusalem Film Festival, believe that in these violent days, it is impossible to talk only about cinema while ignoring the killing and horrifying events around us.

"We are scared too. Some of us are parents. Our children are terrified of the code red sirens and of the thundering sounds of warfare. We do not seek revenge and do not believe in a military solution; this has proven futile in the past.

"Children in Gaza do not enjoy the protection of the Iron Dome systems. They have no residential secured spaces, and no sirens.

"Children living in Gaza today are our partners in peace tomorrow. The killing and horror we inflict only push any diplomatic solution further away.

"Cameras here, in Israel, film and tell about the suffering and pain of Israeli citizens subject to missile attacks. They do this on a daily basis. It is important for us to state that we deeply sympathise with Israelis living in Southern Israel, who have found themselves in the battlefront. They are innocent men, women and children that have lived through an unimaginable nightmare for years. They are entitled to full protection, but there is another way!

"A dialogue must be established, an acknowledgment of the suffering of the other. Today, we want to direct those cameras to the suffering of Gaza residents, men, women and children killed during the last few days. Those filming the suffering of Israelis should be courageous and honest enough to film the killing and destruction in Gaza as well, and tell that story as well. The pain of Israelis and Palestinians is intertwined, and the first cannot cease as long as the other continues.

"The "life goes on" conception, by which surrounding events cannot and will not affect our everyday dealings, is morally impossible. In these terrible days, we as artists and creators expect from ourselves, the festival's administration, the spectators and the media to use this event to issue a clear, loud cry for change.

"We call the Israeli government to cease fire; we urge it not to send our troops to be killed again, in another pointless, cruel military campaign; we call it to engage in meaningful dialogue with the Palestinian people and its leaders, to achieve a viable peace for both sides."

Suggested For You

Suggest a correction