More than 300 Australian nightlife venues and workers sign open letter calling for ceasefire in Gaza

today08/12/2023 8

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An open letter from Australian venues and workers has been launched calling for a ceasefire in Gaza.

The letter – named Nightlife For A Free Palestine – has seen around 300 signatures so far from a range of venue owners, promoters, artists and staff who form the Australian nightlife community.

Calling for a ceasefire, the letter reads that it hopes for “freedom, safety, justice and peace for all Palestinian people” as it adds that “human rights and international law must be upheld”.

The letter mentions that it has witnessed venues hosting fundraiser events “targeted with abuse on social media”.

An organiser shared with Mixmag that the open letter emerged in response to a “coordinated smear campaign against Palestinian events and the venues they took place in”.

The letter adds: “Nightlife events are simply recognising the humanity of the Palestinian people and calling for their rights to be respected, the same position taken by independent human rights organisations such as Amnesty International, Doctors Without Borders, Oxfam, Plan International, Save the Children, the United Nations and UNICEF. These attacks seek to silence this position and are blatant attempts to obstruct the pursuit of justice, liberation, and sovereignty. They are also clear examples of anti-Palestinian racism.”

The main affirmations Nightlife For A Free Palestine share are broken into three. Firstly it explains it wants: “The right for all people to gather, create, mourn, heal, and celebrate in nightlife spaces without fear of persecution. This includes Palestinians, Arabs, Muslims, First Nations people, Jews, queer people, and others of differing faiths and ethnicities.”

Secondly: “We refuse to be intimidated by the ongoing attacks on our venues, workers, and members of our community.”

And finally: “We will continue programming artists that are targeted by institutional violence and oppression, recognising the fundamental contribution they make to our culture.”

A organiser behind Nightlife For A Free Palestine has shared with Mixmag the following: “”This open letter was a decentralised, community effort by Australian nightlife workers and their supporters, in consultation with local Palestinian organisers. It is more important than ever that we use our platforms to advocate for the basic human rights, and the humanity, of Palestinians. We abhor the violence and genocide that is being unleashed on Palestine, and the accompanying campaign of stochastic terrorism waged against Palestinians here in Australia and abroad. Nightlife has a revolutionary history, and has always held a special place in the heart of the subjugated. We honour that legacy by standing in solidarity with the Palestinian struggle for liberation.”

Read and sign the Australian Nightlife For A Free Palestine open letter here.

Mixmag have curated a list of ways people can help Palestine. Check out the full list here.

Becky Buckle is Mixmag’s Multimedia Editor, follow her on Twitter

Written by: Tim Hopkins

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