Major movie stars like Susan Sarandon, Mark Ruffalo, Viggo Mortensen and Peter Capaldi released a statement in support of Emma Watson and Palestinian solidarity.
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Earlier this month, Watson shared a photo of a pro-Palestine protest on Instagram with the phrase “Solidarity is a verb” written on it. In caption, the actor quoted the academic Sara Ahmed on the meaning of solidarity.
The message was criticized by Israeli politicians like Danny Danon, Israel’s former ambassador to the United Nations, who tweeted: “Ten points off Gryffindor for being an anti-Semite.”
Gilad Erdan, Israel’s current ambassador to the United Nations, wrote: “Fiction can work in Harry Potter but it doesn’t work in reality. If so, the magic used in the wizarding world could eliminate the evils of Hamas (which oppresses women and seeks the annihilation of Israel) and the PA (which supports terrorism).
More than 40 film figures have since released a joint statement, organized by Artists For Palestine UK, endorsing Watson’s original post. Figures include directors Jim Jarmusch, Asif Kapadia, Ken Loach, composer Brian Eno, as well as actors Steve Coogan, Charles Dance, Stephen Dillane, Maxine Peake, Gael Garcia Bernal, Ralf Little and Miriam Margolyes.
The statement reads: “We join Emma Watson in supporting the simple statement that ‘solidarity is a verb’, including meaningful solidarity with Palestinians fighting for their human rights under international law. We oppose justice everywhere and support all who seek to end oppression.
“We oppose continued Israeli attempts to forcibly displace Palestinian families from their homes in the neighborhoods of Sheikh Jarrah, Silwan and elsewhere in the Occupied Palestinian Territory in East Jerusalem.
“We recognize the underlying power imbalance between Israel, the occupying power, and the Palestinians, the people under a system of military occupation and apartheid.”
They added: “We condemn all forms of racism, including anti-Semitism and Islamophobia. Opposition to a political system or policy is distinct from fanaticism, hatred and discrimination targeting any group of humans because of their identity. We view the former as a legitimate and necessary form of political and ethical expression and the latter as outright racism.
Other supporters include actors Julie Christie, Liam Cunningham, Art Malik, Dominic Rains and Michael Malarkey.