Activists from the Association Il Villaggio are to stage a sit-in demonstration at the Venice Biennale on 14th October, in protest at Apartheid Israel’s cynically entitled ‘Life Saver’ exhibit. (For the appeal of the Campaign click here.)
The exhibit is designed to justify and legitimise Israeli crimes, and has been denounced by Palestinian groups and voices from further afield. The Palestinian Campaign for the Cultural and Academic Boycott of Israel (PACBI) have called on groups from around the world to condemn the Israeli contribution.
The activists will put a question visitors to the exhibit: âWho throws a Life Saver to the Palestinian people?â and denounce the project of the expulsion of Palestinians from their land and from the records of history.
In front of the monuments featuring the Zionist propaganda, in which colonization is represented as heroic salvation, the activists plan to bring real âlife saversâ of all sizes and colours to explain the visitors that beneath the propaganda an international commitment to save justice and the future of the Palestinian people is needed.
âWe want all those who come out of the Israeli exhibit to recognize the history that has been kept hidden: it is not possible to cancel the ethnic cleansing aimed at extinguishing an entire people, starting with the over 400 Palestinian villages that have been destroyed and wiped from the memory as a result of the creation of the state of Israel and the 750 000 Palestinians expelled from their homes in 1948, who together with their children and grandchildren continue to be refugees denied the right of return.â
âInternational law and the United Nations, are to be the life saver of the Palestinians that are now abandoned to occupation. Italians, Israelis, Palestinians and anyone else visiting the Biennale must distinguish between the occupier and the occupied, the oppressor and the oppressed. There should be no doubt that the people who risk being wiped off the map, encaged and reduced to starvation is not the Israeli but the Palestinian people.â
âUnfortunately, many Israeli architects and urbanists have been involved in the planning and the implementation of the system of oppression and control that began with land theft and confiscation since 1948 and continues today in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip with the constant construction and development of colonies, roads forbidden to Palestinians and the Apartheid Wall which has been repeatedly condemned by the UN.â