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Architects and Planners for Justice in Palestine
UK architects, planners and other construction industry professionals campaigning for a just peace in Israel/Palestine.


Frank Gehry, Daniel Barenboim join Ariel boycott campaign

 By Natasha Mozgovaya, Haaretz – 21 Sept 2010

World-renowned architect Frank Gehry and the legendary pianist and  conductor Daniel Barenboim joined Tuesday the international campaign in  support of the Israeli actors’ refusal to perform in the new cultural  center of Ariel, according to the website of Jewish Voices for Peace <> .

The boycott statement has been signed by over 200  artists, including Jennifer Tilly, James Schamus, Tony Kushner, Harold  Prince and others.

Gehry,  the architect of the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao and the Walt Disney  Concert Hall in Los Angeles, recently pulled out of desiging the Museum  of Tolerance planned to be built in Jerusalem on the site of an ancient  Muslim cemetery.

Cecilie Surasky, Jewish Voice for Peace Deputy Director, commended Gehry for his support.

“It is particularly critical for  architects to speak out against the ongoing construction of Jewish-only  communities on Palestinian land,” she said, adding that “architects and  planners are the key implementers of the Israeli policy of taking and  brutally occupying Palestinian land in violation of international law.  For Mr. Gehry to take such a moral stand once and for all ends the  mythical firewall between architecture, policy, and human rights.”

“We hope Israeli architects will be inspired to launch their own campaign to refuse to work in the settlements,” Surasky added.

The Jewish Voice for Peace website published  a statement saying that “as American actors, directors, critics and  playwrights, we salute our Israeli counterparts for their courageous  decision.”

“They’ve made a wonderful decision,” the  statement added, “and they deserve the respect of people everywhere who  dream of justice. We stand with them”.

The “artists’ boycott” stirred  growing controversy in Israel, with calls to stop the funding to the  artists who refuse to perform in Ariel – a city of slightly above 18,000  people, most of whom are not religious.