Jyoty and Manuka Honey withdraw from Berlin’s CTM Festival amid alleged “crackdown” on pro-Palestine artists

The DJs will join over 850 workers currently participating in Strike Germany, a call to boycott state-funded cultural institutions in Germany.

Berlin skyline

Credit: Jakubaszek/Getty Images

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DJs Jyoty and Manuka Honey have pulled out of this year’s CTM Festival in Berlin in solidarity with Palestinians in Gaza.

The withdrawal serves as an act of protest in support of Strike Germany, which boycott’s German state-funded institutions after the country recently banned pro-Palestinian marches over fears of violence and anti-Semitism.

The announcement was shared through the Ravers For Palestine‘s Instagram account. The post explains how the pair will join more than 850 other cultural workers in the Strike Germany boycott, with many more apparently artists set to follow suit.

Other artists already involved include East African DJ Kampire, who expressed she “no longer feels comfortable” performing at CTM, as well as Dominican dancehall DJ Kelman Duran, underground EDM artist Van Boom, and more.

“In recent months, the German state and its cultural institutions have led an intensifying crackdown on artists – primarily Black, Brown and Jewish – expressing solidarity with Palestinians facing genocide in Gaza,” Ravers For Palestine go on to explain in their Instagram post.

“This month, the Berlin senate announced that artists and cultural workers will now have to agree to the controversial IHRA definition of anti-Semitism in order to receive state funding,” they continue, “a move which will further chill and restrict dwindling rights to political expression in Germany.”

The mandatory signing of the IHRA’s so-called ‘antidiscrimination clause’ has been criticised by many, with over 4,000 German and interational artists alike having signed a petition against the requirement. Despite claiming the new clause is a bid to quash racism, anti-Semitism, homophobia and any other “discriminatory expressions,” many believe the move restricts “artistic freedom”.

The strike has three demands: a focus on protecting artistic freedom, fighting against claims of pro-Palestine supporters being anti-Semitic, and combating structural racism.

Speaking on her own Instagram story, Manuka Honey clarifies that the boycott is not a swipe at the festival, but rather in support of Strike Germany.

“We are adhering to the call to action created by Strike Germany and boycotting state-funded cultural institutions… CTM is state-funded,” Manuka Honey explains, before adding that “collective action =\= cancel culture.”

Berlin’s CTM Festival have also released a statement showing their respect for the artist’s decisions, claiming: “we remain steadfast in our support of artistic freedom and dialogue. We are actively engaging in many conversations at the moment, and are committed to continuing these exchanges.”

“As a music festival we believe that art and culture provide valuable spaces for encounters and reflection, and remain dedicated to keep such spaces open to discuss and negotiate our differences with mutual respect.”


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