Home » German Politicians Call for “Consequences” Amid Debate Over “Antisemitic” Berlinale Awards Show

German Politicians Call for “Consequences” Amid Debate Over “Antisemitic” Berlinale Awards Show

by UNN Feed

The heated debate over the awards ceremony of this year’s Berlin Film Festival shows no signs of cooling down.

On Tuesday, German Justice Minister Marco Buschmann called out the Berlinale for allowing what he called “antisemitic” statements to go unchallenged at the awards gala in Berlin Saturday night. Speaking to newspapers of Germany’s Funke media group, Buschmann said the film festival “suffered serious damage” as a result and suggested there could be criminal consequences for some of the statements and slogans.

The awards ceremony for the 74th Berlinale turned sharply political as one award winner after another used their festival platform to call out the Israeli government for its actions in the war in Gaza.

Ben Russell, co-director of Ben Russell Direct Action, winner of the best film in Berlin’s Encounters sidebar, used the word “genocide” to describe Israeli military action in the region. Palestinian filmmaker Basel Adra, whose No Other Land won the best documentary prize as well as the Panorama Audience Award, said “it is very difficult for me to celebrate when tens of thousands of my people in Gaza are being slaughtered by Israel right now.” His Israeli No Other Land co-director Yuval Abraham spoke of “apartheid” in his home country.

French artist Véréna Paravel, a member of the Berlinale documentary jury, sewed a “Cease Fire Now” sign on the back of her dress, demonstrating her political loyalty as she handed over the Berlinale doc award for No Other Land.

Véréna Paravel wore a ‘Cease Fire Now’ sign as she handed over the Berlinale documentary award to Basel Adra and Yuval Abraham for “No Other Land”.

Andreas Rentz/Getty Images

“I stand with Palestine,” said French-Senegelse director Mati Diop on accepting the Golden Bear in Berlin for her doc Dahomey.

On the night, and in the room at…

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