Israel’s parliament voted on Sunday to advance a bill that cuts subsidies to cultural organizations deemed not “loyal” to the state, the country’s culture minister said.
The proposed legislation, denounced by artists and freedom of speech activists, was proposed by far-right Israeli Culture Minister Miri Regev.
The bill must pass three votes in parliament before it can become law.
On Sunday, the Ministerial Committee for Legislation will discuss the "loyalty-in-culture" bill proposed by Culture Minister Miri Regev, who seeks to grant herself power to censor Israeli culture.https://t.co/OOQbHbXn2A
— ARC (@AtRiskArtists) October 22, 2018
The bill would give Israel’s finance and culture ministries the power to slash subsidies for any institution that challenges Israel’s existence as a Jewish state or eschews celebrating the creation of the state in 1948.
For Palestinians, the anniversary marks the Nakba, or “catastrophe”, when more than 700,000 fled or were expelled during Israel’s creation in 1948.
— Israel News (@IsraelNewsNow) October 21, 2018
The draft law would also see funding cut over work that attacks the state flag.
Regev wrote on Facebook:
“I am very happy that this law has been passed by the Ministerial Committee on Legislation … It will then be presented to the Knesset to be adopted, God willing, next month… Yes to freedom of culture, no to provocations!”
אחרי ועדת השרים לחקיקה ואישור הממשלה, חוק "הנאמנות בתרבות" עובר לכנסת. 🇮🇱🇮🇱🇮🇱
Posted by Miri Regev מירי רגב on Sunday, October 21, 2018
Regev, a member of Israel’s ruling right-wing Likud party, is no stranger to controversy and has repeatedly clashed with the country’s largely left-leaning cultural elite.
Last year she slammed the Israeli drama “Foxtrot”, which won the Venice Film Festival’s second highest prize, for spreading untruths about the Israeli army.
(Al-Araby Al Jadeed, PC, Social Media)