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Popular Art Centre (PAC)

Profile

Country/TerritoryPalestinian Authority
Websitehttps://www.popularartcentre.org/
Founded1987
In their own words“PAC seeks to create a cultural environment that facilitates the building of a stronger connection between Palestinians and arts and culture.”

Funding

Activities

  • Claims to “disseminate creative arts and culture to various sectors…to preserve and maintain cultural heritage, protect the national identity, and upgrade levels of creativity in form and content.”
  • PAC engages in political warfare against Israel, including through its highly troubling rhetoric.
  • On April 6-7, 2017, PAC was one of the organizers of a children’s festival on the topic of “the 30 year Palestinian uprising.” One dance routine publicized by PAC was titled “Songs of the Intifada.” Another was captioned “Brother, point the gun” (NGO Monitor translation).
  • In February 2016, PAC organized a ceremony in honor of “Palestinian martyrs” whose homes were demolished, featuring the “father of the martyr Baha Eleyan” as a speaker (NGO Monitor translation). Eleyan was one of two terrorists to board a bus in Jerusalem in October 2015 armed with a gun and a knife, murdering three and injuring seven. The same ceremony featured a musical performance captioned “no to laying down guns” (NGO Monitor translation).
  • Published numerous statements in support of hunger-striking prisoners, a group primarily comprised of murderers convicted of bombings of buses, malls, and cafes, and other atrocities.
  • Hosted a “Nakba Day” a Gazan school, where it taught students aged 7-13 about “the Nakba in general and the boycott of the Israeli state of occupation.”
  • Participated in a 2017 Israel Apartheid Week event, organized by “BDS Arabic.” Nai Barghouti, a singer who performed at PAC’s event, posted on Facebook after the event that “our journey of résistance is still alive and kicking. We will not stop until we gain our freedom and that is a fact.”
  • In July 2014, PAC invited its followers to a “Day of Palestinian Rage” (NGO Monitor translation).
  • Supports a Palestinian “right of return,” which, if implemented, would effectually mean the elimination of Israel as the nation state of the Jewish people.
  • Participates in discriminatory campaigns such as “Love in the Time of Apartheid Campaign: The Palestinian Campaign for Repealing Israel’s Racist Law Denying Family Reunification.”

BDS Activities

  • Supports BDS (boycotts, divestment, and sanctions) campaigns against Israel, encouraging its followers to boycott Israeli products.
  • PAC is a member of the Palestinian Performing Arts Network (PPAN), which issued a statement condemning “Israel’s deliberate and systematic policies of occupation, settler colonialism and apartheid against the Palestinian people.” The groups call upon “fellow artists” to “Pressure your governments to end the Israeli occupation of Palestine,” and “Support and endorse the Palestinian Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI).
    • PPAN also called upon Oscar nominees in 2016 to reject a trip to Israel included in the Oscars gift bag. The statement accuses Israel of attempting “to use influential cultural figures to whitewash its persistent human rights abuses and denial of freedom to Palestinians.”
  • Signatory to a 2005 open letter to the Palestinian Environment NGO Network (PENGON), expressing support for its boycott of Bar-Ilan University and Haifa University and calling to “broaden the boycott until it is comprehensive of all Israeli academic institutions.”
  • Signatory to academic and cultural boycott initiatives from 2015 and 2014.

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