Boycotters urge Alicia Keys to cancel Tel Aviv show

By Jennifer Lipman, May 30, 2013
Alicia Keys performs in Tokyo (Photo: Lukas)

Alicia Keys performs in Tokyo (Photo: Lukas)

Alicia Keys has become the latest musical star to face calls for her to boycott a planned performance in Israel.

The 12-time Grammy Award winner is due to sing at Tel Aviv's Nokia Arena on July 4 – the first time she will have performed in Israel.

But, as with other stars who have chosen to include Israel on their tour list, she is being targeted by supporters of the boycott, divestment and sanctions campaign.

Anti-Israel activists, including author Alice Walker and musician Roger Waters - both outspoken critics of Israel – have launched a petition urging her to cancel the show because she is "a person of conscience and a philanthropist".

Ms Walker, author of The Colour Purple, wrote in an open letter to the singer that "a cultural boycott of Israel and Israeli institutions (not individuals) is the only option left to artists who cannot bear the unconscionable harm Israel inflicts every day on the people of Palestine".

Campaigners have also swamped Ms Keys' official Facebook page will calls for her to cancel.

Ms Keys has so far not made an official comment about the boycott campaign, but when the Israeli date was announced, she said she was "excited to go to new places", Tel Aviv included, and planned to bring "a show full of emotion and inspiration".

Last updated: 11:04am, May 30 2013