Ronen Shoval
Ronen ShovalPR photo

Former Im Tirzu head Dr. Ronen Shoval has filed a complaint, through his campaign operatives, against Sapir Academic College with the Israel Police. 

Shoval accuses the school, located in the northwestern Negev desert near Sderot, of stirring up incitement by displaying their current exhibit. 

The exhibit features works of art containing the expressions: "Kill the Jews," "Daash [Islamic State]," and "With blood and fire we will redeem Palestine."

Shoval, who founded the Im Tirzu grassroots Zionist organization and is now running in the primaries for Jewish Home party, said "it does not make sense that an Israeli college, funded by taxpayers' dollars, should hold an exhibition featuring incitement to murder Jews." 

"It is ridiculous that the freedom of expression by the extreme left gets broad legitimacy, while the national camp suffers from being shut up. It's completely out of line."  

"I demand that Sapir immediately remove the exhibition," Shoval stated. "Also I call on the police to investigate the curator of the exhibition on suspicion of incitement to murder Jews." 

Sapir Academic College responded to Shoval, saying "The exhibition 'Power of the Word' shown at the new gallery at the School of Art includes works by some of the best artists in Israel." 

"These include Israel Prize winners David Tartakover and Moshe Gershuni, winner of the Zionist Creation Prize Israel Rabinovitch, well-known artists Micha Kirshner and Tova Lotan, and a member of Israel's Council for the Arts, Southern artist Avner Bar-Hama." 

"The artists whose works were included in this exhibition received institutional, governmental, and public recognition. Their works are well known to the art-loving public and have been exhibited and acquired by museums and collectors throughout the country." 

Sapir Academic College's statement continued: "These artists express their opinions and produce works that raise conflict and public discourse. Therefore, this exhibit opens discussion about the disagreements [in our public] and the art reflects the opinions of both sides."

"Free speech and free thought exist at Sapir Academic College in an effort to foster pluralism and tolerance. We expose to the faculty and students a variety of public opinions as part of their education." 

"The public is invited to the new gallery to view the impressive exhibition with their own eyes."