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Ham&High poll shows community split over Tricycle Theatre decision on Jewish festival

Protest outside Tricycle Theatre in Kilburn following refusal to host Jewish film festival over Gaza conflict. Picture: Nigel Sutton Protest outside Tricycle Theatre in Kilburn following refusal to host Jewish film festival over Gaza conflict. Picture: Nigel Sutton

Wednesday, August 13, 2014
11:45 AM

The Tricycle Theatre’s decision not to host an annual Jewish film festival sponsored by the Israeli government has divided opinion among Ham&High readers.

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Two pro-Palestine protestors turned up at the demonstration. Picture: Nigel SuttonTwo pro-Palestine protestors turned up at the demonstration. Picture: Nigel Sutton

Following the decision last week, a poll conducted on our website asked readers if they agreed or disagreed with the stance taken by the theatre in the wake of escalating violence between Hamas and Israel in the Gaza Strip.

As of Monday afternoon, 2,028 readers had voted in the poll with 1,040 (51 per cent) supporting the theatre’s decision and 988 (49 per cent) opposing it.

Organisers of the UK Jewish Film Festival, which has taken place at the theatre for the past seven years, are working round-the-clock to find alternative venues to host the 26 films screenings, and six gala events, which were due to be held at the Tricycle.

Ham&High editor Geoff Martin said: “The poll shows this is clearly a divisive issue, with those who responded to the poll being almost evenly split.

“The strength of feeling in the Jewish community is palpable: many feel personally offended by a decision which has nothing to do with the arts in London, but with a conflict more than 2,000 miles away.

“Support for the Tricycle’s viewpoint also shows the strength of feeling against the Israeli offensive.”

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