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Protesters Gather Outside Frankfurt Concert Venue Opposing Roger Waters’ Show

Roger Waters (Via Roger Waters/Twitter)

Members of several Jewish groups, politicians, and a coalition of civil society organizations converged on Sunday at the Festhalle in Frankfurt, Germany, where they held a memorial ceremony and a protest rally against a concert by Roger Waters, the co-founder of Pink Floyd. The protesters accused Waters of antisemitism, an allegation he vehemently denies. Waters has also drawn ire for his support of the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement, which advocates for boycotts and sanctions against Israel. The Frankfurt authorities had initially attempted to prevent the concert, but Waters successfully challenged the move in a local court.

The protest came as authorities in Berlin launched an investigation against Waters on suspicion of incitement over a costume he wore during a performance at the German capital earlier this month. In the costume, Waters was seen wearing a long black coat with a red armband and firing an imitation machine gun, which sparked outrage and accusations of glorifying Nazi rule. Waters rejected the allegations, stating that the elements of his performance aimed to oppose fascism, injustice, and bigotry in all its forms.

Roger Waters (Via Roger Waters/Twitter)

During the memorial ceremony, protesters read out loud the names of 600 Jews who were rounded up at the Festhalle on November 9, 1938, during the Kristallnacht, a night of terror against Jews throughout Germany and Austria. The event also featured a joint Jewish-Christian prayer for the victims of the Nazi terror. Frankfurt Mayor Mike Josef reiterated that hatred of Jews must be condemned everywhere and that there is no reason to hate, insult, or attack someone because of their religion.

The protest rally was attended by around 400 people, many of whom handed out flyers to concertgoers and waved Israeli flags. Others held up banners with slogans such as “Israel, we stand with you” and “Roger Waters, wish you were not here.” This is not Waters’ first run-in with protesters; a similar rally was held in Munich earlier this month, and the city of Krakow cancelled his concerts last year due to his stance on Russia’s war against Ukraine.

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