Sam Smith cancels Tel Aviv concert under pressure from Palestinian activists

The "Unholy" singer was scheduled to perform at the "Summer in the City Festival" in Tel Aviv at the end of May.

Katie Daviscourt Seattle WA
Singer-songwriter Sam Smith announced that he will be cancelling his performance in Tel Aviv, Israel after succumbing to pressure from pro-Palestinian activists.

The "Unholy" singer was scheduled to perform at the "Summer in the City Festival" in Tel Aviv at the end of May, according to i24News. Smith's production company blamed the cancellation on "unforeseen technical and logistical problems."

Those "unforseen" circumstances that production is referring to is the recent pressure campaign put forth by pro-Palestinian activists on social media to get Smith to cancel his concert in Israel. Activists created a special hashtag called, "#SamDontGo", and flooded Twitter with anti-Israel propaganda which included images of Israeli activist detaining Palestinian youth, and holding Palestinian families at gunpoint.

petition signed by more than 11,000 was sent to Smith demanding that he reconsider playing at the festival, in which he was going to promote his new album "Gloria."

"As a Sam Smith fan, I'm joining Palestinians, fellow Jews, LGBTQIA+ and all human rights defenders in asking
@samsmith to choose the right side of history and not pinkwash Israeli apartheid by performing in Tel Aviv. #SamDontGo," radio host Rafael Shimunov wrote on Twitter.

In a follow-up tweet, Shimunov celebrated Smith's decision to pull out of the concert, stating it's a "win" for "human rights."

"We won! Congrats to @AdalahJustice and everyone who did this. Sam Smith has cancelled their Tel Aviv show, denying Israeli apartheid a major pinkwashing victory and proving the power, once again, of Palestinians and human rights defenders. #SamDontGo," Shimunov wrote.

Critics slammed Smith, who self-identifies as non-binary and uses the pronouns they/them, for "standing in solidarity" with Palestine when the West Bank beheads LGBTQ+ individuals.

"Sam Smith, it's a shame you give in to the lies of an anti-Israeli campaign. I really hope that no one in Israel will listen to your music again. Those who boycott us should be boycotted back!" Yosef Haddad fired at the musician in a video on Twitter.

Adding, "Sam Smith you hypocrite. Shame on you!"

The "Summer in the City Festival" will take place on May 31 in Park Hayarkon in Tel Aviv.


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