Skip To Content

Support the Forward

Funded by readers like you DonateSubscribe
Breaking News

Cologne Agrees to Host Critical Exhibit on Israeli Troops

The German city of Cologne has reversed course and said it will host an exhibit by an Israeli organization that accuses Israeli soldiers of mistreating Palestinians.

The city had planned to show the Breaking the Silence exhibit this fall during a week of events marking 50 years of diplomatic relations between Israel and Germany. But the Israeli Embassy in Germany convinced Cologne last week to cancel the exhibit offering testimonies critical of Israeli actions in the West Bank and Gaza.

In a statement Tuesday, however, Cologne said it will show the exhibit after all as a standalone presentation in the spring. The statement said the exhibit will be presented “in an appropriate context.”

In reference to the cancellation, the statement said, “There were rising voices that warned the city of Cologne of adverse effects, especially in terms of propagating anti-Israel and anti-Semitic resentment, which looked misplaced in the anniversary year and during the celebrations.”

Israel’s ambassador to Berlin, Yakov Hadas-Handelsman, told The Times of Israel on Thursday that his objections were not about the content of the exhibit but that it had “nothing to do with the 50-year anniversary of diplomatic relations.”

In an interview with a Cologne newspaper, the ambassador said he would have reacted similarly in any other country.

“Of course, especially in Germany, they could have been a bit more sensitive,” Hadas-Handelsman said.


Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.