The Multaka-Mifgash: Arab-Jewish Community Center is under a serious attack. The Center is located in a public bomb shelter granted to the Negev Coexistence Forum by the Be’er Sheva municipality already nine years ago. Now, the municipality wants to reclaim the shelter following our announcement to screen the movie “Shivering in Gaza”.
To mark one year since Operation Protective Edge, Amnesty International Israel planned a screening of the movie “Shivering in Gaza”, which tells a story of PTSD treatment in Gaza after Operation Cast Lead, at the Cinematheque in the city of Sderot. A well-known right-wing activist issued a complaint and incited public opposition to its screening, which resulted in cancellation of the event by the mayor of Sderot.
When AI Israel approached NCF to screen the movie at the Multaka-Mifgash, we did not hesitate. We believe that it is the right of all Negev-Naqab residents to see this movie or any other movie for that matter. The actions by the mayor of Sderot are a direct infringement on the Freedom of Speech and NCF cannot stand by idly.
Following a news article announcing the relocation of the movie screening to the Multaka-Mifgash, we were contacted by the legal adviser of the Be’er Sheva municipality, who informed us that we cannot proceed with the screening.
The Arab-Jewish Culture Center is now at risk. If we continue to do what is uniquely representative of our role in the Negev-Naqab, we will lose a place that provides an opportunity for Jews and Arabs to meet for dialogue and joint action. The situation is such that all activities deemed “political”, even if they only seek to provoke open dialogue and coexistence, can be the grounds for the municipality to reclaim the shelter. We are forced to consider options alternative to a place that has been our home for ten years. It is a sad reality that we may quickly find ourselves without a home.
We need your help!
If you make a donation to the Negev Coexistence Forum, it will help us secure a place to continue our coexistence activities in the occasion that the Multaqa-Mifgash is repossessed by the municipality.
Please consider making your contribution today. Support the Multaka-Mifgash: Arab-Jewish Community Center. Support the Negev Coexistence Forum!